September 29, 2023

Reservation: A modern day discrimination | By Swayam Smruti Dash

India, once said to be the land of golden bird and considered to have the richest cultural heritage. It has always enlightened the world with its knowledge and wisdom and has witnessed some of the greatest empires of the world.

In this contemporary world, however India is considered to be one of the poorest nations and has mostly lost its ancient wisdom. There are various factors which hinders India’s growth. One such is  “misuse of reservation of SCs, STs”. The SC, ST act or the prevention of Atrocities act (POA) was passed in 1989 on the recommendation of mondal commission to bring lower castes in to the mainstream world. But over the years POA act has failed to fulfill its objectives.

Admission to any government job, universities, institutions etc becomes quite difficult due to unequal opportunities given to the reserved class. This has made them careless about their preparations as they already know that they will get selected with even a low score. This has ultimately led to more differences between the upper and lower castes which is itself a violation of the act. Also it is misused by some others who are already in well established jobs but their wards continue to receive benefits under the POA to admit to top government institutions with a very substandard score in entrances. For example, this year the JEE main cut off for general category students is nearly 90 percentile, for SC it is 50 percentile and for ST it is 39 percentile. This meagre passing score is often misused by educated students rather than the ones’ who really need them and doesn’t get access to proper education. This has also resulted in brain drain among the deserving candidates.

According to the data by the ministry of tribal, the sanctioned representation for SCs, STs is 24% of their population, but they are already getting roughly 29.5% representation in government institutions. So it is now high time to amend the POA act so that only the deserving SC, ST candidates get the opportunity.It should be amended on the basis of access to education and what salary the parents of the SC, ST children receive. Also proper punishment should be given to those who misuse it. 

We are a democratic nation, instead of focusing on equality we should focus on equity taking into account certain reasonable parameters. Even there  was a meme which told as follows ” US is developed because it gives opportunity to deserved one, unlike India which gives to the reserved one”. We can’t progress to be a superpower, unless we become united as Indians rather than continue to discriminate people as general or SCs or STs.

— Swayam Smruti Dash

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