The Supreme Court verdict is unlikely to have any impact on caste- and religion-based organisations since they are neither registered political parties nor do they directly seek votes.
Such organisations will continue to dictate terms to political parties before and after elections in both the Telugu states since they play a crucial role in deciding the electoral fortunes, so much so that all major parties vie for their support during elections by promising sops if they come to power.
These organisations do not take part in elections directly but only extend support to any political party that has the biggest bouquet of promises (like increase in reservations) for the community they represent.
While representatives of these organisations have publicly welcomed the SC verdict, they opined that implementation was easier said than done since it involves many ‘practical difficulties’ which are not possible to implement in Indian society, where religion and caste matters more than anything else.
Krishnaiah, All India BC Welfare Association:
We welcome the SC order. Separating religion and caste from politics is not possible just with the SC orders as political parties themselves are formed based on caste and religion. The SC should first give a judgement banning castes. India should be made a caste-less country first. Only then the implementation of SC orders will be possible. Constitutional amendments should be made in this regard and election rules should be further tightened. Else the SC orders would remain only on paper.”
Mr Krishnaiah’s BC Association has 112 Backward Classes. Its call to support Y.S. Rajashekar Reddy is believed to have ensured the victory of the Congress in 2004 and 2009.
Ayush, RSS Prachar Pramuk for Telangana:
The SC has termed elections a secular exercise but we feel that the whole concept of secularism in India needs to be redefined. The word secularism itself is foreign. It was conceptualised in Europe to separate the State from Church. It was in 1976 that Indira Gandhi incorporated the words ‘secularism’ and ‘socialism’ in the Constitution. Nevertheless, we welcome the SC order. But how far will these orders be implemented? Some parties and leaders are terming Hindusim is a religion, but the SC itself ruled in the 1990s that Hinduism is not a religion but a way of life. Now, how can one claim that Hinduism is a religion?”
The RSS network, including its several organisations, supporting the Narendra Modi campaign in a coordinated operation is believed have been responsible for the victory of the BJP in the 2014 elections
Manda Krishna, MRPS:
We welcome SC orders but the question is, are they practically possible to implement? Before giving such orders, the SC and the Election Commission must first ensure that there should be a level playing field for all castes in elections. In Indian society, where there is huge caste discrimination and when hundreds of castes are yet to enter Parliament and State Legislatures even nearly 70 years after Independence, implementation of such orders is a big question.
The MRPS tells the SC communities to vote for a particular party that supports SC categorisation, its prime objective. MRPS founder Manda Krishna Madiga contests elections as an independent candidate with this agenda.
Ambati Rambabu, YSRC:
The SC orders look good on paper but the question is whether Indian democracy or society is ready to implement them in toto or is it practically possible to adopt them? Is there any political party in India which can ensure implementation of these orders in toto? Caste plays a dominant role in Indian society for ages and it cannot be changed overnight by making laws or giving judgements. The mindset of society and people need to be changed first. Every party gives ticket to a Kapu, Kamma, Reddy or BC candidate. based on their political clout in their respective constituencies. This is the norm in Indian democracy since Independence. We all must welcome SC orders which are good for the country but the problem is with implementation part which needs to be extensively debated.
Mr Rambabu is a leader of the Kapu community, whose support is deemed crucial to win the elections in AP. The TD has alleged the YSRC’s involvement in the Kapu agitation for inclusion in the BCs list
Courtesy: Deccan Chronicle