Free Press Journal

OBC income cap raised to Rs 8 lakh pa


New Delhi : The creamy layer ceiling for Other Backward Classes (OBC) candidates for securing government jobs was raised to Rs 8 lakh as the Union Cabinet cleared a proposal for a commission to work out sub-categorisation within OBCs for a “more equitable distribution of reservation benefits” on Wednesday.

Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said that OBC families earning up to Rs 8 lakh per annum will not be considered in the creamy layer. Earlier, this ceiling was Rs 6 lakh per annum.

Asked if the raised limit will also be applicable to public sector undertakings, Jaitley said the issue was under “active consideration of the government”.

Jaitley said the Cabinet approved a proposal for setting up of a commission under article 340 of the Constitution to examine the issue of sub-categorisation of the OBCs.

He said the commission will examine the extent of inequitable distribution of benefits of reservation among the castes or communities included in the broad category of OBCs, with reference to the OBCs included in the Central list.

It will work out the mechanism and parameters for sub-categorisation within such OBCs, identify the respective castes or communities or sub-castes in the central list of OBCs and classify them into their respective sub-categories.

“With this, those in the broad category of OBCs who were till now devoid of benefits of reservation, will get the benefits. There will be more equitable distribution,” he said.

The commission will submit its report within 12 weeks from the date of appointment of the Chairperson, said the minister.

Jaitley said the National Commission for Backward Classes had given its recommendation in 2011 that there should be sub-categorisaion and the Parliamentary Standing Committee had also given such a recommendation.

The Supreme Court, in its November 1992 order had observed that there is no constitutional or legal bar to a state categorising backward classes as backward or more backward.

The minister said 11 states have already implemented the sub-categorisation for state level services.

These are Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Bihar, Jharkhand, Puducherry, Haryana, Karnataka, West Bengal, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Jammu and Kashmir (only for Jammu region).

On whether the government is going to review the reservation mechanism, Jaitley said: “There is no such proposal. there will be no review.”

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