Falling deeper into caste-based reservation

Bangalore City

Reservation for scheduled caste might increase from existing 15 per cent to 17 per cent in Karnataka.

By Apoorva GS

One Man Commission is expected to form a proposal for the central government to increase the reservation for scheduled caste (SC) in Karnataka from existing 15 percent to 17 percent in Karnataka .

In a meeting conducted at Gandhi Bhawan in Bangalore, members of the scheduled caste proposed an increase in caste-based reservation for the SC. The meeting was attended by Ex-Congress MLA Anjaneya, Retd. IAS officer Venkatayya N., Advocate V. Nagaraj – Legal Advisor, Dr. Siddhalingayya, Mavaali Shankar, among others. 

“When the 1981 census was conducted, the population of scheduled caste was 15.06 percent of the total population. In 1982, 15 percent reservation was given to the SC and three per cent for ST. It was decided on the basis of literacy rate, economic status, population, and other related aspects, but it hasn’t been revised till date because of the Supreme Court judgment in the Indra Sawhney vs Union of India case, in which honorable Supreme Court upheld that the reservations shouldn’t exceed 50 percent,” said Venkatayya N.

“Article 335 stated that the claims of the members of the SC and ST shall be taken into consideration, consistently with the maintenance of efficiency of administration,” he added.

The meeting put forth the demands of the scheduled caste, which included—increased reservation in government jobs and education.

At present, Karnataka provides 15 percent reservation for SCs, 3 percent for STs and 32 percent for the OBCs which makes it up to 50 percent. These include 101 scheduled castes, 50 scheduled tribes, and 207 OBCs, which include Muslim, Christian, and Jain communities.

Because of the Supreme Court’s ceiling of 50 percent reservations, the percentage of the reservations remained the same. Thus, the members decided to ask the Central government to do away with or increase the ceiling.

The outcome of the meeting will be forwarded to One Man Commission, formed by the Karnataka Government, led by Retd. Judge Nagmohan Das who will later forward it to the central government.

The motive of One Man Commission is to analyze, discuss and collect the data to back their demands. The members of the SC want percentage share in reservation to be increased on the basis of increase in the population.