Ahead of the Bihar assembly elections set to be held later this year, the NDA government is considering raising the creamy layer criterion from the present annual income of Rs 6 lakh to Rs 10.5 lakh.
The move, based on the recommendations of the National Commission of Backward Classes (NCBC), is likely to help the BJP woo the Other Backward Class (OBCs), who constitute close to 50% of the population in the state.
The NCBC, in its recommendations to the government, said that raising the ceiling would help backward aspirants gain entry into central government jobs and educational institutions.
Sources said the social justice ministry forwarded the report from the NCBC to the department of personnel and training (DoPT), which is deliberating on the matter.
“The DoPT had asked for a detailed report on the NCBC recommendations and we sent the same last month,” a government official said, on condition of anonymity.
The battle for Bihar, analysts say, is going to be a close contest, with the JD(U)-RJD combine likely to give a tough fight to the BJP.
Raising the creamy layer criteria will boost BJP’s electoral chances in the state.
The creamy layer ceiling separates the affluent OBCs from the poor, who are eligible for 27% quota. The last revision of the creamy layer criteria was undertaken in 2013 -- when the ceiling was raised from Rs 4.5 lakh.