Karnataka CM Basavaraj Bommai’s cabinet may discuss Panchamasali Lingayats’ quota demand tomorrow

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The Panchamasali Lingayats’ demand for more reservation is expected to be discussed at the Karnataka cabinet meeting scheduled for Thursday, when a massive march organised by the community will reach Belagavi, where the Assembly’s winter session is underway.

Panchamasali Lingayats, a key voter base of the ruling BJP, is a subsect of the Veerashaiva Lingayat community, and a decision on its demand for more reservation in government jobs and education will be a crucial factor in the upcoming Assembly elections.

Instead of the 5 per cent quota they have, the Panchamasali Lingayats want to be included in the 15 per cent OBC category of 2A, which already has 102 castes.

Speaking to The Indian Express, Vijayanand Kashappanavar, president of the Panchamasali Trust and a former Congress MLA, said the community would besiege the Suvarna Vidhana Soudha, the legislature building in Belagavi, if the demand was not met.

“If the government fails to fulfil the demands, there will be political implications as well. We will be marching towards Suvarna Soudha and the community is expected to participate in massive numbers,” he said.

BJP MLA Basanagouda Patil Yatnal, who has been supporting the community, expressed his confidence in Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai. “I have faith in the chief minister on the issue of the inclusion of Panchamasalis in the 2A reservation category,” he said.

More than 5,000 police have deployed across Belagavi district and near Suvarna Soudha as they expect massive turnout at the march that started Wednesday.



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