Panel: Ajit Jogi isn’t Adivasi, doesn’t deserve ST benefits

RAIPUR: In a major setback to former CM Ajit Jogi, a high-power caste scrutiny committee in Chhattisgarh has rejected his claim of being a tribal — a decision that could lead to cancellation of all his caste certificates and have significant political implications.

The committee has arrived at the conclusion that Jogi — founder of Janata Congress — doesn’t belong to an Adivasi community and is not entitled to related benefits, said sources. More than a third of Chhattisgarh’s electorate is tribal, and Jogi represents the Marwahi (ST-reserved) constituency. Describing the caste scrutiny panel as ‘Bhupesh high-power committee’, Jogi said: “It’s a wrong decision. I am yet to get a copy of the report. It will be challenged in court.”

“It is apparent that the committee acted on the guidelines of CM Bhupesh Baghel. The HC has found in a case that my son Amit is a Kanwar tribal of Mudi Gotra. But the high power committee’s finding is that his father is not a tribal,” Jogi said, adding: “I think I’m the only person who doesn’t have a caste. As per high power panel, am not a Kanwar tribal but they have not said what’s my caste.”

News of the committee’s report was leaked on social media on Monday, and it is yet to be tabled. A government spokesperson refused to confirm or deny the report.

Ajit Jogi’s son Amit, Janata Congress state chief, said: “I came to know from media that a high power caste scrutiny committee, set up by the Bhupesh Baghel government has passed an order. We’ve moved HC against the committee, raising various points.”

Source: The Times of India

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