Mumbai: Maha Govt sets up new State Backward Classes Commission

Sanjay Jog | Updated on: Friday, June 04, 2021, 12:23 AM IST

Relief and Rehabilitation Minister Vijay Wadettiwar  |
Relief and Rehabilitation Minister Vijay Wadettiwar |

Days after the Supreme Court struck down the 27% political quota for OBCs in local bodies, the Maharashtra Government on Thursday formed the State Backward Classes Commission to gather empirical data of OBCs from all 36 districts. This formation of SBCC aims at the restoration of the political quota of OBCs in the local bodies after submitting the necessary data to the Supreme Court.

The Commission is headed by the retired justice Anand Nirgude. The formation of the Commission was necessitated as the term of the previous Commission led by Justice MG Gaikwad had ended in January 2020. The announcement of the establishment of a new Commission was made by the Relief and Rehabilitation Minister Vijay Wadettiwar on Thursday though the government has yet to issue a formal notification for the same.

The Commission will check the existing OBC list, examine the proposals received from OBC communities for their inclusion in the list. The Commission will conduct the survey and check the social backwardness of the communities. The Commission will recommend the list of communities for their inclusion in OBC to the National Commission for Backward Classes.

The Commission may once again study the backwardness of the Maratha community and submit it to the NCBC. This is in the wake of the scrapping of the Maratha quota by the Supreme Court and also rejecting the Justice Gaikwad led Commission’s report recommending the Maratha community as socially and educationally backward.

The members of the newly formed Commission include Babanrao Taiwade, Chandralal Meshram, Advocate Balaji Killarikar, Prof Sanjeev Sonawane, Dr Gajanan Kharate, Dr Neeliman Sarap, Dr Govind Kale, Laxman Hake and Alka Rathod.

An OBC activist Mrunal Dhole Patil said the establishment of Commission is not sufficient as the state government will have to provide adequate funds and manpower to collect the empirical data as directed by the Supreme Court. “This is clearly a face-saving exercise by the government as the formation of the Commission would have been done much earlier. Had the Commission started its work, the government could have pleaded before the apex court that the Commission is in the midst of conducting data and therefore would have sought time,” he added.

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Published on: Friday, June 04, 2021, 12:23 AM IST