Centrally run educational institutions may get additional three years to implement the 27 per cent quota for Other Backward Classes (OBCs).
The human resource development ministry has prepared an amendment to that effect in the Central Educational Institut-ions (Reservation in Admissions) Act) 2006, currently awaiting law ministry clearance.
“Most of the centrally funded institutions have made little or no progress in implementing the quota,” said a senior HRD Ministry official, explaining why the amendment was needed. “They have failed to expand infrastructure and faculty to the extent required.”
When the act was passed, the government decided that while the educational institutions must reserve seats, the number of seats already available in the non-reserved category should not be reduced.
Thus these institutions had to expand their facilities and staff very quickly to accommodate a larger number of entrants.
The Act, implemented from the 2008 academic session, also mandated that all institutions complete 27 per cent OBC quota within three years. Thus they had time only till the end of the 2010-11 academic session to meet the objectives set.
So far, even the universities that have acquired the infrastructure to accommodate additional students — like DU and JNU — have failed to fill all the reserved OBC seats.
Others like Jamia Milia Islamia are yet to introduce OBC reservation.
In DU, for instance, 180 seats were reserved for OBC candidates during the 2009-10 session. But the university could fill only 50 per cent of the seats despite setting the cut off 10 per cent lower than that for the general category.
At JNU, which has a residential campus, expanding hostel facility has been a challenge. “Getting extra time would be wonderful. We have constructed a girls hostel but we’ll need more time to build a boys hostel to accommodate the additional students,” said B.B. Bhattacharya, vice chancellor, JNU.