Today the Union Government approved 10 per cent reservation for economically backward upper castes in government jobs and education. A proposal 10 per cent reservation is made for those who are economically backward or weaker and fall under the general category. The Union Government will now move to amend the Constitution in order to grant this 10 per cent reservation for the economically weaker in the general category.
In order to do so, the Union Government will amend Articles 15 and 16 of the Constitution. These two amendments will provide reservation of not more than 10 per cent to the economically weaker sections among castes that fall under the general category. This would benefit several upper castes across the country.
Article 16(4) of the Constitution enables provision of reservation to Backward Class of citizens, who are not adequately represented in the State. Reservation is provided to Scheduled Castes (SCs), Scheduled Tribes (STs) and Other Backward Classes (OBCs) at the rate of 15 per cent, 7.5 per cent and 27 per cent respectively, in case of direct recruitment on the all-India basis by open competition.
The 10 per cent reservation will be available to those who meet a certain standard qualifying them as economically backward. This qualification will be based on the value of assets held by a person and/or their annual income.
A person will be qualified as economically weaker if:
1. Their annual income is below Rs 8 lakh
2. They own agricultural land of fewer than five hectares
3. They own homes smaller than 1,000 sq. ft.
4. They own residential plots below 109 yards in the notified municipality
5. They own residential plot below 209 yards in non- notified municipality area
The Union Government’s decision to grant 10 per cent reservation to those who economically backwards comes months ahead of the crucial 2019 Lok Sabha election where Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be seeking a second term in office.
By welcoming the decision Congress leader Harish Rawat tweeted ” Bahot der kar di meherban aate aate that also when election are arounf the corner . No matter what they do ,what jumlas they give , nothing is going to save this government.”