NEW DELHI: A non-profit organisation has moved the Supreme Court for a direction to the Centre to hold a fresh survey of backward classes who actually deserve benefits in jobs and educational institutions.
The Kumhar Maha Sabha has demanded a review of the present list of Other Backward Classes (OBC) as it includes several “undeserving castes.”
The list, it said, was prepared 36 years ago after the Mandal Commission gave its report. Based on the suggestions, the government in 1993 gave 27% reservation benefits to OBCs in jobs and later in education.
According to the petitioner, the National Commission for Backward Classes Act, 1993, makes it mandatory for the government to revise the list periodically.
As per the provision, a survey was required first in February 2003 and then in February 2013. However, no revision has been carried out till date.
The non-revision has benefitted some classes of citizens who despite being reasonably advanced continue to derive the advantages of governments’ reservation policy. In support of its case, the petitioner cited last year’s SC judgment in the Jat quota case wherein the top court had quashed the Centre’s notification of including the community in the OBC list of nine states.
The top court had recommended fresh survey to determine the genuine backward classes and exclude those from the list who no longer require reservation benefits. It said noninclusion of genuine backward classes caused “gross injustice and heart burn to its members”.
“This is also a violation of the fundamental right to equality,” read the petition, filed at a time when Jats have once again decided to begin their agitation in Haryana demanding OBC status.
“It is a fact that various classes of citizens included in the lists of OBCs do not have the same level of backwardness. Some classes are extremely backward, while some others may be much less backward in comparison. In fact, there may be certain classes of citizens included in the OBC lists which may not be backward at all, but might have been included in the lists due to their political weight,” the petition said.