By Dr C Sadasiva
Reservations for SC and ST have been there since the Constitution of India came into force. Mandal Commission was constituted by Mrs Gandhi and V P Singh initiated its implementation. In 1990s, the question of back log came before the apex court and suggestions for rosters were given to be implemented by governmental and autonomous institutions. First the 13-point department basis rosters, then 100 point institution based rosters and later 200 point institution base drosters came to be enforced.
When someone felt this 200 point roster led to a situation of a particular departmentin BHU may not get an upper caste teacher because of reservation, he approached the high court of Uttar Pradesh and the court responded by ordering that 13 point roster is better. When MHRD and UGC felt compelled to follow the order, teachers ofUniversity of Delhi were up in arms. The central government went for appeal before the Supreme Court and the apex court ratified the order of high court.
What the dispute is all about! The 13 point roaster reduces the available reserved posts drastically and 200 point makes it possible to raise the number of available posts to a reasonable figure and if implemented honestly the backlog of 70 years in case of SC and ST and 30 years in case of OBC may get filled up a little sooner.
The Modi government came out with 10 per cent EWS quota saying that the so called injustice will be undone. How can an eight lakh incomewala be poor when even in Dayal Singh college a student is ineligible if the parental income is more than Rs two lakh for fee concession. So many contradictions! How is it that Congress party, RJD, BSP, SP and others did not oppose the amendment in Parliament. Are they so confident about votes of savarnas? Only the Left including the CPI took a principled stand.
CPI took a clear stand opposing the so-called 10 per cent reservation for economically weaker sections saying Constitution talks about social and cultural backwardness brought into existence because of historical reasons. The aim is to undo a historical wrong and to create an inclusive India. It is to demolish a caste – based discrimination, a feudal legacy. The moving upwards of the socially backward can create a congenial atmosphere for inter-caste matrimonial relations more and more leading to annihilation of caste as envisioned by Ambedkar. Well one may think of reservations within reservations so that the benefits can reach the most backward among the SCs, STs, OBCs. But the ten per cent reservation which is a fraud is basically an attempt to fool the people. When there is 50 per cent in the general category where everyone can compete, what is the need for EWS?
In 1950 itself, it was said that there will be free and compulsory education up to the age of 14. What happened to that? AISF, the pioneer student body is demanding free education till as long as a student wants to pursue. When a small country like Cuba can accomplish this task, why can’t India?
To put bluntly, the only way to remove economic backwardness is by moving on to a socialist path and by discarding the present policies of commercialisation and privatisation. Otherwise this talk of helping the economically backwards is an eye wash.
The bluff of Modi should be exposed. And the cowardice of the so called social justice political parties that attempt to survive on the basis of the strength of one caste or the other too needs to be exposed. Their opportunistic silence should be exposed before the masses. (IPA Service)