The government on Friday cleared the raising of income limit for the ‘creamy layer’-OBCs who would fall outside the purview of reservation-to Rs 4.5 lakh per annum from the current Rs 2.5 lakh. The revised criteria is expected to bring many more OBC families into the reservation fold.
The decision, reached at the Cabinet meeting on Friday morning, would be communicated to the ministries of HRD and department of personnel and training so that they can issue appropriate orders to central educational institutions and government departments to implement the new criteria.
The proposal to revise the income ceiling for the ‘creamy layer’ had been mooted by the ministry of social justice and empowerment on the basis of recommendations of the National Commission for Backward Classes.
The proposal was discussed at an inter-governmental level, involving the ministries of tribal affairs, home, DOPT, law and HRD, besides social justice and empowerment. None of the ministries gave any negative remark on the recommendations.
The HRD ministry gave certain suggestions like spelling out clear-cut modalities for giving reservation benefits with this enhanced ceilings to those working in private sector and public sector units (PSUs), agency reports added.
The first ceiling for OBC reservation was fixed at Rs 1 lakh annually in 1993, which was later revised to Rs 2.5 lakh in 2004. The current ceiling revision comes at a time when the benefits of 27% reservation to the OBCs have already been extended for admissions in educational institutions after the enactment of Central Educational Institutions Act, 2006, by the HRD ministry in January last year.
The National Commission for Backward Classes had in July this year recommended Rs 4.5 lakh as the practical ceiling limit for exclusion of the creamy layer among OBCs from reservation benefits.
The Commission took into account the recommendations of the sixth pay commission, besides criteria like the all-India consumer price index, price rise, inflation rate, monthly per capita expenditure of the OBCs, economic conditions of the OBCs and per capita national product before arriving at a decision on the new ceiling.
The commission also considered the views expressed by representatives of the various state backward class commissions and secretaries in charge of the related departments of the states and union territories.
“None of the ministries gave any negative remark on the recommendations. The HRD ministry gave certain suggestions like spelling out clear-cut modalities for giving reservation benefits with this enhanced ceilings to those working in private sector and public sector units (PSUs),” an official of the Social Justice Ministry said.
Most of the states had in a conference here earlier demanded the new ceiling be fixed between Rs 4 and Rs 6 lakh. Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh had, however, demanded higher ceilings of Rs 25 lakh and Rs 10 lakh, respectively.