Book exemption -seekers under SC, ST Act: Dalits

TIRUPATI: The petition filed by some TTD employees in the High Court seeking exemption for Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams from implementation of reservation rule, is snowballing into a major controversy with several Dalit organisations demanding action against the petitioners for questioning the constitutional right of SCs. The AP Scheduled Castes Welfare Association has demanded that action be taken against the 332 TTD employees, who approached the court in this regard without the knowledge of TTD Trust Board.

Addressing a press conference here today, association president P Paramasivan and secretary P Chengalrayulu demanded the suspension of Tirumala OSD C Ramana, who is also TTD Officers Association secretary, and other union leaders for furnishing `erroneous facts’ to the High Court with regard to GO No 1060 (Employees Service Rules).

In their petition, the TTD employees had contended that the rule of reservation was not applicable to the autonomous religious organisation as the TTD was not getting any funds from either Centre or State Government.

“The employees should be booked under the SC, ST Atrocities (Prevention) Act for showing `disrespect’ to the Constitution and `insulting’ Dalits,’’ the leaders said.

The Dalit organisations would chalk out an agitational programme, if the TTD Executive Officer failed to take action against the employees within 48 hours.

The TTD SC and ST Employees Association also demanded action against the petitioners.

Despite OSD Ramana’s clarification that he was in no way connected with the petition and he was not against Dalits, the SC association leaders refused to relent on the issue. TTD Executive Officer KV Ramanachary was also accused of being lenient to the 332 employees who approached the High Court seeking exemption from reservation rule.

Condemning the move of TTD employees, Republican Party of India State secretary P Anjaiah threatened to launch a stir, if the employees failed to withdraw their petition.

The AP SCs Welfare Association brought out a pamphlet criticising the employees move against the rule of reservation. More Dalit organisations are likely to join issue posing a serious problem to the TTD.