Kolkata, Feb. 25 (PTI): In a bid to woo minorities ahead of the Assembly elections, the West Bengal Chief Minister, Buddhadev Bhattacharjee tonight said his Government was trying to ensure job reservations for Muslims.
"I am trying to create job opportunities for Muslims. Last year Andhra Pradesh enacted a legislation for job reservation for Muslims. I procured a copy of the Bill to see whether we could do something similar, but the court said it was not constitutional," he said at a function of West Bengal Minorities Development and Finance Corporation (WBMDFC).
Expressing displeasure at the socio-economic condition of the Muslims who comprise 27 per cent of the state population, Bhattacharjee said, "I took up the issue of job reservations with the prime minister and the Planning Commission. The Constitution allows job reservations for SC/STs. But what about the Muslims? This is a national problem."
Bhattacharjee, who holds the Minority Welfare portfolio, said he had taken the initiative to appoint members from the Muslim community into the College Service Commission and the School Service Commission.
"We do not want to disregard the Constitution. My point is to protect the interest of Muslims."
Stating that a section of the media had wrongly depicted him as being against madrassa education, the Chief Minister said, "We are not against madrassas. We are against their teaching only theology and Arabic. If their students do not learn English, mathematics and computers then what will be their future?"