The National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC) lashed out at the government and the UPSC for denying quota benefits to OBC candidates in the civil service examination by arbitrarily rejecting their certificates.
The commission has told the department of personnel & training (DoPT) that the government could not go beyond the creamy layer criteria set on the recommendations of the statutory body under a 2007 decision by the Centre.
The panel’s stinker to the government comes after five civil services candidates were denied Other Backward Classes (OBC) quota benefits on grounds that their parents held well-paid jobs. The five still cleared the examination this year, but moved the commission after they did not score enough to get the services they had set their eyes on — the IAS, IPS or the IRS.
“Many OBC students have approached us... The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) and DoPT continuously create problems for OBC students and are doing nothing to resolve their issues,” NCBC member Shakeel-uz-Zaman Ansari said.
And to make sure there is no confusion, the commission passed a fresh resolution to make it clear that children of government employees should get quota benefits even if their parents’ pay package exceeds `6 lakh. The commission said they would be treated as creamy layer — and excluded from quota benefits — only if their income from other sources exceeds this upper limit.
The concept of creamy layer in OBC reservations was introduced in 1993 to ensure that candidates who come from well-to-do families do not corner the quota benefits.
Unlike Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe candidates, OBC candidates cannot avail quota benefits if they come from a well-off family.
There is a long list of criteria to identify the creamy layer. A family income of `6 lakh is one. Another is that neither of the parents should be directly recruited as a Class I officer. A third keeps out children whose both parents are Class II officers in the government.
But what if they work in public sector undertakings? The rulebook says children will not get quota benefits if their parents hold comparable posts, a rule invoked by the government in the recent civil services examination. The NCBC insisted the government could not do this on its own, and had to rely on the NCBC to identify the comparable posts.
“We will ensure that OBC students get justice,” Ansari said.