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Monday, February 13, 2012

Congress backs Khurshid on minority quota row

New Delhi, Feb 13 (ANI): Congress Party on Monday came out in defence of Union Law Minister Salman Khurshid, who is facing the heat over his statement on


nority quotas made during the campaign in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh.
"We respect the orders of the Election Commission. However, one situation has to be understood, every minister is also a political leader. Especially, Salman Khurshid who has added responsibilities, as he is also the chairman of the Manifesto Drafting Committee in Uttar Pradesh," Congress leader Harish Rawat told the media here.
"Therefore, it becomes obligatory for him to put forward the promises he has made in the manifesto to the people and he should be allowed to do so. I also feel that we will be able to clarify this technical debate with the Election Commission," he added.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has been demanding the Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, to break his silence on the matter.
Khurshid has, however, said that his statement had not put the Prime Minister in a sticky position.
"No. There is no controversy, no unending feud, nothing at all. There may be differences, there may be different points of view, but there are no differences," he said.
During a recent poll campaign in Uttar Pradesh, Khurshid had promised that if the Congress party was voted to power in the state, the sub-quota for Muslims would be increased to nine per cent within the 27 per cent reservation meant for Other Backward Classes (OBC).
However, the Election Commission of India (ECI) slapped Khurshid with a notice, saying his remarks had violated the model code of conduct.
The Election Commission sought the "immediate and decisive" intervention of President Pratibha Devisingh Patil after it charged Khurshid with "improper and unlawful" defiance of its orders under which he was censured for promising sub-quota for minorities.
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