Lok Sabha delimitation is a constitutional process and it is not known when it will be taken up, union minister for culture G Kishan Reddy said, even as the BRS party in Telangana maintained that if it is done on the basis of population, it will be a “gross injustice” to the south. Speaking to reporters on Wednesday at the national capital, Reddy had said the new parliament was constructed based on future needs.
“Delimitation is a constitutional process. When it will be taken up we do not know. The new Parliament was constructed based on future needs. We are not making a new law on that (delimitation),” Reddy said when his attention was drawn to BRS working president and minister KT Rama Rao’s comments that southern states will be likely to suffer “severe injustice” with a population-based delimitation.
The Lok Sabha chamber in the new Parliament building, which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on May 28, has thrice the number of seats with enough space for 888 members, and the new Rajya Sabha has the capacity to seat 384 members. This is in light of the fact that a delimitation exercise at some point in the future would lead to a rise in the number of MPs in the country.
Reddy further said the union government has not made any new laws on delimitation and it (delimitation) is not due to Prime Minister Modi. He always respects south Indian personalities, Kishan Reddy said, pointing out that the PM never finishes his speech without quoting a freedom fighter or a poet or any prominent person of south.
“The central government is fully cooperating with the governments of the southern states. The sengol belonging to the south was erected in Parliament,” he added.
Back in Hyderabad, Minister KTR, talking to reporters on Thursday, said during the late 1970s and 1980s the Centre’s family planning campaign was taken up seriously by southern states and some other progressive states, resulting in lesser population growth.
“You cannot penalise those states that have done well in population control and say since you have controlled population now we will penalise you by reducing your number of parliament seats or your representation in Parliament. It is absurd and horrendous,” KTR said. He made an appeal to the leaders and people of the southern states to speak out against the “injustice” going beyond politics and asked the Centre to hold discussions with all the stakeholders in this regard.
The minister issued a statement on Wednesday alleging that southern states are likely to suffer “severe injustice” with the population-based delimitation. AIMIM president Asaduddin Owaisi agreed with the minister’s statement and said he made an important point.
“This concern has been voiced in the last five years that you cannot penalise those states which have controlled the population. And if you are going to make a benchmark of delimitation on the basis of population, then how can you penalise those states that have controlled the population,” he said on Wednesday.
The Hyderabad Lok Sabha MP further said the Centre has to find a way where those states that controlled their population growth would not lose out when it comes to their representation in Lok Sabha. The Sangh Parivar and the BJP blame the massive population growth, he said, and sought to know their position on whether they want the delimitation to be done on the basis of population or on the basis of how those states have controlled population.
(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed – PTI)