Odisha’s ruling Biju Janata Dal pitches for caste-based census

Bhubaneswar: Odisha’s ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) has pitched for conducting a caste-based census, a demand that has grown louder ever since the Parliament passed the 127th Constitution Amendment Bill in August this year.

“A caste-based census will help in collecting information on people belonging to Other Backward Classes (OBCs) who have so far been kept out of the purview of development,” senior Minister Ranendra Pratap Swain said at a Press conference here on Tuesday.

He reiterated the demand for a caste-based census which, he said, would help ensure justice to the backward class people.Swain called upon all political parties in the State to join Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s clarion call for a caste-based census.

Also addressing the Press meet, Minister Arun Kumar Sahoo said that a hike in reservation and a caste census are two sides of a coin. Targeting opposition BJP, he said that the silence of saffron party on a caste-based census is showing its apathy towards other backward classes.He said that Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik is committed to give justice to OBCs in the State.

It is pertinent to mention here that the demand for a caste-based census is gaining momentum in the States like Bihar and Uttar Pradesh. Many political parties such as RJD, JD(U) and Samajwadi Party are the most vocal in support of a caste-based census.