Sunday, May 1, 2011

A critique of Teltumbde's article "Another Reservation

The deal is as to how he twists facts to make his case.

1) Dr Ambedkar only talked against political reservations having a time limit of 10 years, because they were useless. And he did not make such a case against reservations in jobs etc. Teltumbde knows all this but still lies about this.
2) More than half the reserved category jobs in the government are not filled, so dont get the deal about there actually being an issue about rich dalits taking away the jobs of the poor dalits.
3) Just as subcaste reservation has become an issue in states such as andhra pradesh, if it was misusage of reserved seats only by rich dalits as teltumbde points out, it would be more than easy to start a campaign by political parties demanding reservation only for poor dalits. This breakin up of the dalit consttituency has been something that has paid rich dividends in bihar with Nitish Kumar and MBCs. But the breaking up has been according to castes which have not garnered any share of reservation, against breaking the dalits in to so called poor and rich dalits. Please note that the MBC breaking up has been for reservations in posts requiring less qualifications, like ticket collectors etc in railways, which get filled by the quota candidates and are not the one's that second generation beneficiaries of the quota target, for which the quota never is fully filled.
4) Another clever instance of mixing words is where he talks about states using up their power to make laws to help growth of backwards, only to add to more reservations. I don't understand why reservations and new policies cannot go hand in hand.
5) The OBC reservations came in to effect because of agitations carried out primarily by the dalits. Initially the OBCs used to get jealous because of sc/st progressing through reservation, but mandal showed the OBCs that their beef on this matter should be with the uppercastes and not sc/sts. This goes completely against his statement "The elites of the BCs could skillfully transform the popular grudge against reservations for the SCs and STs into the passion for their extension to other backward castes, thus setting into motion the competitive backwardness to claim reservation." Then he talks about reservations opening up a pandoras box of sorts, while he feigns that he does not understand that it is these very sections taht have not had a share in teh working of the country that are really asking for the same.
6) He makes a statement that Kanshi ram talked about the chamcha age and hence naturally concludes that reservations are useless. Whereas it was BAMCEF which was a union of reserved employees working for the government that really ushered Kanshi Ram and BSP to the centre stage of indian politics. Completely twisting the whole context in which Kanshi Ram talked about the Chamcha age really makes him smell of being a brahmin stooge. The reason that most dalits using reservation don't openly come out in support of the dalit movement, is because of the casteism prevailing urban india, where these dalits have a lot to lose, be in professionally or in society. The problem there is not with reservations but societal attitudes.

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