Welcome to the official website of Youth For Equality, Mumbai. We thank all those who have been supportive of our efforts to create a fair and equitable society.
This is a forum of equals to oppose the recent CHANGE in reservation policy proposed by the Government of India. We are a non-political, non-violent and united group of individuals.

* Read up more on the issue to educate yourself: unless you are well informed, you cannot convince others
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Saturday, September 09, 2006

Arguments of the pro-reservation brigade and their rebuttals:

The basic arguments of the pro-reservation brigade are:

1. They have been oppressed for the past 2000 years and that they need reservations to progress
This is the basic concept which has to be understood; so read this carefully. Those who have been oppressed for the last 2000 or whatever years are the dalits, the untouchables, and NOT the OBCs. And the dalits (SCs and STs) have got reservations for the last 60 years. The Constituent Assembly did not extend reservations to the OBCs because it thought that they do not need them, that they are sufficiently well-off to progress without the crutches of reservations.
OBC as the full form says is OTHER BACKWARD CLASSES,Mind you it was never CASTE.The class could comprise anyone,it could have been village artisans or even economically backward upper caste.The important word in OBC is BACKWARD and not class or caste…
And reservations do not seem to have worked even for the SCs and STs. In the Delhi University, between 1995 and 2000, just half the seats for under-graduates at the Scheduled Castes level and just one-third of the seats for under-graduates at the Scheduled Tribes level were filled. All the others went empty, unfilled (NSSO stats). SC and ST seats lying vacant in educational institutes: 41543 in Rajasthan, 11500 in MP, 12549 in TN, 6000 in Himachal Pradesh… Obviously, the policy of reservations is flawed.

As far as the OBCs are concerned, they include Yadavs, who were kings (Lord Krishna was a Yadav) 2000 years ago! Indeed, far from being oppressed, a Yadav has been worshipped for the past 2000 years. Jats were also rulers. Patils were village headmen. So the oppression part is just a big lie repeated repeatedly. Read ahead for a more comprehensive idea.

Contrary to the impression created by the votaries of reservations, caste has not been an entirely rigid construct in India. Going back 2000 years in Indian history, one can find numerous instances of royal families (such as the Nandas and the Mauryas) who were neither Brahmin nor Kshatriya nor Bania.

In more recent history, it may be worth mentioning that as Mughal rule collapsed in Northern and Western India, Jats assumed royal power in parts of Haryana, Northern Rajasthan and Western UP. In Maharashtra, Gujarat and MP, upwardly-mobile sections of agriculturists (i.e. the Marathas) assumed royal power.

Prior to that, during the Mughal rule, Yadav chieftains ruled minor principalities as subordinates to the Mughals.

Yet today, all these aggressive neo-Kshatriya groupings claim OBC status.

Likewise, the Patels of Gujarat, who were once agriculturists, have come to play a significant role in the world of commerce. However, in spite of their neo-Bania existence, they mostly prefer to claim OBC status.

Thanks to the numerous schemes for small businesses instituted since independence, individuals from various agricultural and other castes have acquired successful trades and small businesses. Yet, none will give up their OBC status for the purpose of reservations.

In Southern India, all manner of castes that are (or were) in practice equivalent to the North Indian Kshatriya or Bania castes have instead very craftily acquired OBC status.
Since the Dravidian movement’s exclusive focus was on isolating Brahmins, other forward castes have happily escaped any censure and have instead were utilized reservations to further strengthen their hold on power.

Although the exclusion of the creamy layer may in principle prevent these neo-Kshatriyas and neo-Banias from monopolizing the benefits of reservations, in practice, exclusion of the creamy layer does not work as desired, since hiding incomes in India is hardly a difficult thing.

It is thus likely, that any extension of the policy of reservations to OBCs will be garnered almost exclusively by the neo-Kshatriyas and neo-Banias, although sections of India’s glib media will showcase the few genuinely deserving cases that benefit to mask the actual reality of reservations.
Of course, there is nothing in this policy for the SC/ST categories who are yet to take proper advantage of even the existing reservations.

2. They consist of 52% of the populace
That is something based on the 1931 census, extrapolated to 1980 by the Mandal Commission without any statistical analysis. The latest figures are of 1999, given by the National Sample Survey Organisation (NSSO), a Government body, which states the figure to be 36% (including Muslim OBCs, 32% being the non-Muslim OBC figure).
And anyway India does not follow a policy of representation. Otherwise 50% of all seats must be reserved for women!
Finally realize the concept of reservations. They are supposed to be only for those who lacked the opportunities to develop their inherent merit. The creamy layer does not need them. So if you exclude these, the percentage falls even further.

3. Merit is not compromised
Let the stats speak in this case.
A survey conducted by IIT shows that half the reserved seats go empty. And of those who do get in, 25 per cent fail to complete the course.
In the best medical college of Maharashtra, a 106 ranked student did not get admission but a 14000 ranked student from Mumbai itself did, thanks to reservations.
Forget graduate courses. Think of the post-graduate level, where they should now be on par, with the same teachers, books and study environment for the entire graduate course. Now they should prove their merit. But the cut-off rank for Psychiatry in Maharashtra PGCET 2005 was 357 for the open category, and 3553 for the Reserved category.
Here are the official statistics for seats of SC / ST line vacant in educational institutes- 6000 in himachal Pradesh , 1000 in haryana , 41543 in rajasthan, 11500 in MP, 12549 in tamil nadu. Perhaps this also means keeping these many “GENERAL CATEGORY” students forcibly uneducated who are otherwise willing.
It is the government that has laid down a system based on competitive exams where candidates on the top end of the merit list are chosen to fill the vacant seats. Now to make merit a dirty word is to argue against the very system odf competitive exams laid down by the government. Besides no seat in an examination is marked “reserved for general category candidates, instead the unreserved seats are open to all including SC/ST/OBC. There is no prejudice against capable dalits as there is no bias in favor of incapable Brahmans.

4. We are speaking against the Constitution
The original Constitution did not provide for reservations for OBCs. It provided them only for SCs and STs, and that too for a limited period of 15 years. This kept on being extended for political reasons, and was of course extended to OBCs by Mr V P Singh.
We believe that the 93rd Ammendment goes against the basic character of the Constitution and our basic right to equality. Equality of all citizensis the fouding faith of our constituition as enshrined in its Preamble.A PIL is already filed on this matter in the Supreme Court.
Our next question is that Why is it that implementation of the Directive Principles ,like Education for all,is not a priority but 93rd amendment is?
The Supreme Court has ruled in our favour on the current issue and has asked the Government to explain the basis on which it has decided to extend reservations further. So in fact, anyone who speaks against this is actually liable to contempt of court.
Supreme court had said in peria karupan as early as in 1971 “ government should not proceed on the basis that once a class is considered as a backward class it should continue to be backward class for all time…. Reservation of seats should not be allowed to become a vested interest”

Is reservation at the post graduate level justified?…… Dr Preeti Srivastava 1999 a constitution bench of the supreme court held that at the level of super-specialty courses, no reservation is permissible since it is contrary to national interest as regards reservation at PG level the question was left open, however the reason that there shall be no reservation for super-specialty courses apply with equal forces to PG course.

Indra sawhney Vs Government of India. – The supreme court held that once a person gets selected to a cadre by a direct recruitment on the basis of reservation, he belongs to one class along with others directly recruited in open competition, and a second level reservation there after for promotion is not valid. This principle holds good for reservation in PG courses also.

Does the 93rd amendment make it mandatory to provide such reservations ???
The clause (5) which was inserted into article 15 by the 93rd amendment enables the state to provide quotas for the backward classes in private unaided professional colleges established by non minorities is ex-facie discriminatory in violation of the law laid down by 11 judge bench decision in T.M.A. Pai. Secondly it is also discriminatory towards the backward classes as they are deprived of securing reservations in minority colleges. Thirdly the constitution bench of supreme court as early as in 1963 in M.R. Balaji held that article 15(4) is only an enabling provision and it does not impose an obligation to provide for reservation. The same holds good for 93rd amendment.

5. Why doesn’t YFE oppose management quota if our fight is for merit?
We do oppose management quota as well. In fact, this is one of the few points where both parties agree. Why don’t the politicians abolish management quota in that case? Simply because all these private colleges are owned by them. Politicians are only after two things – votes and money. They get their votes by reservations and they get their money by management quota.
One point to clarify – the private medical colleges in Maharashtra do not have management quota. The fee of their seats is higher (as decided by the court and a committee), but admissions are based on a Common Entrance Test and on merit only.

And finally, remember this one argument to end all arguments. The entire country agrees that casteism is bad and needs to go. Ask them how reservations will end the caste system.