After 11 days of protest, Mali community in Rajasthan call off stir

Jaipur: Members of the Mali community in Rajasthan, who had blocked a highway for the last 11 days demanding 12 per cent reservation in jobs and higher education, called off their protest on Tuesday after talks with the state OBC Commission.

During a meeting on Monday with the commission, a delegation representing the community, while pressing for the quota, had asked it to seek reports from all districts on the socio-economic status of the community and complete the survey in a month’s time.

“The commission has written to district collectors to submit a report on the status of the community and we want that the commission conduct the survey at the earliest. We are satisfied with the talks and assurances, and have decided to call off the protest,” Murari Lal Saini, convener of the Phule Aarakshan Sangarsh Samiti, told reporters at the protest site in Arauda village in Bharatpur district.

Saini, Mali, Kushwaha, Shakya and Maurya belong to the Mali community. At present, they are under the OBC (other backward classes) category, but are demanding a separate 12 per cent reservation. Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot also belongs to the same group.

A delegation of the community had met Gehlot on April 25 where he assured them to get a survey done by the OBC Commission.