Amidst various suggestions, Union Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment Ramdas Athawale supported BJP MP Udit Raj's demand for reservation for Dalits in all sports, including in the national cricket team.
On 15 November, Udit Raj who represents North-west Delhi in the Lok Sabha, brought up the issue of reservation for Dalits in sports, citing the example of a law enacted by the South African government by which at least five players of colour have to be included in the national cricket team.
Reiterating Udit Raj's demand, Athawale said, "It should happen. Talented players from the community would get chances if reservation comes up."
Athawale said that a Dalit quota in the Indian national cricket team would mean more wins for the country. "The team loses on many occasions and to make them win, there should be a quota for the Dalits," he said.
Likening the team under Virat Kohli to the government under Narendra Modi, he said, "at the moment, Virat Kohli's team is in good form as PM Modi's team."
In response to Athawale, Congress leader Panna Lal Punia said that while it was necessary to give Dalits the opportunity for training, the ultimate selection must be done on the basis of merit.
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