A landmark Constitutional amendment bill seeking to provide 10 per cent reservation in jobs and education for the economically backward in upper castes (general category) was passed by the Rajya Sabha, with most parties supporting the measure, described by the government as "historic" and in the country's interest. Rajya Sabha passed the Reservation Bill with 165 voting and 7 against. "Delighted the Rajya Sabha has passed The Constitution (One Hundred And Twenty-Fourth Amendment) Bill, 2019. Glad to see such widespread support for the Bill. The House also witnessed a vibrant debate, where several members expressed their insightful opinions," Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted.
Delighted the Rajya Sabha has passed The Constitution (One Hundred And Twenty-Fourth Amendment) Bill, 2019.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) January 9, 2019
Glad to see such widespread support for the Bill.
The House also witnessed a vibrant debate, where several members expressed their insightful opinions.
"Passage of The Constitution (One Hundred And Twenty-Fourth Amendment) Bill, 2019 in both Houses of Parliament is a victory for social justice. It ensures a wider canvas for our Yuva Shakti to showcase their prowess and contribute towards India’s transformation, he added.
Rajya Sabha passes the Constitution (124th Amendment) Bill, 2019 with 165 'ayes'. The bill will provide reservation for economically weaker section of the society. pic.twitter.com/JFLlIfwjOk— ANI (@ANI) January 9, 2019
While few parties such as RJD and AIADMK opposed it and AAP abstained from the voting on the bill in the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday, the main opposition party Congress and several others including SP, BSP and TMC voted in support, even as many wondered how it will benefit the people when jobs were shrinking.
Applauding Modi and the entire Union Cabinet for passage of the bill by Parliament, BJP chief Amit Shah thanked members of all parties who supported the bill in the Rajya Sabha Wednesday.
Union Finance Minister and Leader of House in the Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley said this endeavour of the Modi government ensures social justice and empowerment for all.
Echoing similar sentiments, Union minister Smriti Irani said today is a historic day and we all have become a part of constitutional history of the country and questioned why opposition did not bring such constitutional security for the poor.
Union Social Justice Minister Thawarchand Gehlot, who tabled the bill in the Rajya Sabha, said in the next few days the government will conclude all formalities for the implementation of the bill.
Senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel termed the bill as an "election gimmick" and expressed concern over its implementation as it was brought in haste.
"The government has not done any homework for this important legislation and I am worried about its implementation," Patel said.
AAP leader Sanjay Singh, who abstained from the voting, described it as stabbing knife in back of common man.
Parliament Wednesday approved amending the Constitution to provide 10 per cent reservation to general category poor in jobs and education with the government terming the landmark move as "slog over sixes".
In the last leg of the legislative process, the bill will now go to the President for approval.
In Lok Sabha on Tuesday, as many as 323 members voted in support of bill and only three voted against, underlining the cross-party support the politically crucial bill elicited.
Replying to an over four-and-half-hour debate, Gehlot sought to allay doubts raised by several opposition members about the legislation's fate if challenged in the Supreme Court, saying he can say with confidence that the apex court will accept it.
“The Modi government's policy and intention is good and that is why it has enabled the reservation for the poor in the general category with constitutional amendment,” he said, seeking support of all parties for the passage of The Constitution (124th Amendment) Bill 2019.
"Your doubts are unfounded. Put them to rest," he told opposition members, many of whom dubbed the bill as "jumla" and "gimmick", questioned its legal standing and accused the government of bringing it in haste with an eye on the Lok Sabha polls.
Rajya Sabha adjourned sine die late Wednesday after passing the historic Constitution amendment bill to provide 10 per cent reservation to economically weaker section in general category.
The session was extended for a day to take up the Constitutional (124th) Amendment bill, which was passed by the Lok Sabha a day before.