Syed Kaleem Geelani
First of all, I am not against RBA category but I am against those who had been continuously taking the entitlements of reservations.
When & How it came into existence?
After Independence, the first priority of the govt was to uplift the destiny of the casts which were poor, downtrodden, neglected & of those living primitive life in jungles & ravines. So, the govt of India appointed First Backward Classes Commission known as Khan Sahib Kalekar Commission on 29th Jan 1953 which submitted its report on 30th March 1955 listing 2399 casts as socially & educationally backward classes in India. Then after, JK Govt appointed a Committee for the identification of backward class/casts of J&K.
They then setup another committee in 1969 under the chairmanship of Justice JN Wazir which submitted its report to the Govt in 1970. On the basis of this report the reservation rules under various categories were set up by the state government which included RBA, Social Casts etc.
The report of this commission was challenged in Supreme Court of India. In order to remove lacunas & defects in the reservation rules as per the verdict of Supreme Court of India, the state government constituted another committee under the chairmanship of Justice A S Anand in 1976 which submitted its report to the government of JK in 1977 September with some commentary wherever he felt necessary.
Justice, in his findings reiterated the contents of article of Indian Constitution which reads, “The state shall not deny to any person the equality before law. At that time, Justice Anand said that I am not against reservations but I am against its continuous benefit for the same person.”
Drawbacks of Reservation Policy?
Availing the continuous benefit of reservations has destroyed & diminished the bright career of many talented youths who inspite of the fact having a good merit fall prey to the reservation policy. It is very sad that the targeted people for whom the RBA category was tailored by the state govt are quite at the receiving end whereas the privileged & creamy layer of the society are being benefitted enormously by it whether they presently live or have ever lived there. We see huge number of people especially the people belonging to general & poor classes are unemployed.
Each & every time we blame govt for unemployment without looking towards our nears & dears who are taking wrong advantages of entitlements provided to them by govt collectively resulting in an unemployment of the state. The people of general & poor categories are on roads for their employment. 50% of blame for the unemployment in JK state goes to these reservations because of the wrong strategy & policy from government about benefits & employments through reservations.
Besides this, corruption is on the peak in our state, a student of poor family can’t afford the huge demands from concerned officials which also becomes a reason for a poor family to become poorer. Here in Kashmir, a poor is compelled to get poorer rather than uplifting them up. On this poor point, as there has been already many reservations in our society, It will not matter If Govt comes up with another reservation for poor families(BPL) just like RBA etc despite of the reservations available for them at Raashan Ghaats (Food Stores).
A student belonging to general category is suffering from the very beginning & has to suffer for being in a general category throughout his whole life. A student belonging to general category is grown up being listening for “Che Chei Ne Category,, Che Chukh forward (you don’t have category, you are forward” & later on after growing up & working hard to get an employment here but falling prey to reservations he finally decides to go outside for different types of jobs at private companies.
So, this is the story & future of maximum number of talented youths belonging to general & poor categories. One feels hopeless for being born in a forward & poor family. A student belonging to general & poor category after working hard & burning his midnight oil to get selected for any post or course is dropped for some points but a student belonging to reservation category after doing a little hard work is selected for having much less points than that of dropped one. This privilege is not a onetime coupon but all time coupons.
The reserved people continue to get set benefits throughout their lifetime whenever he needs to make his way behind the general categories of the society. Even the Phd scholars of general category apply for fourth class jobs due to this selective attitude from govt. There are hundreds of families who actually hail from RBA villages of JK or have purchased few kanals of land there for RBA category certificate & settled in the cities & towns got into top government jobs under reserved categories.
The sons & daughters of these well settled people in government sectors are living in areas of cities also get entitlements under RBA or other reserved categories. The sons & daughters of such families having better schooling get the employment in the public sector easily under RBA & are posted in the cities & towns whereas the deserving youth are deprived both of their services & employment.
The cunning people hailing from so called RBA manage appointment of their children in the villages but soon after they get themselves transferred to big towns & cities rendering the posts vacant. The RBA reservation lollypop continues to benefit the boys & girls who got into medical, engineering colleges, education & other departments under the RBA category with less points get out of turn promotions whereas on the other hand the persons who belong to the open category gets frustrated & his future becomes dark.
This injustice can be seen in many government departments like Education, Veterinary, Agriculture etc. It is an irony that the daughters hailing from villages & have studied in the schools falling in RBA cease the right the moment they are married outside whereas a girl from big cities having studies in public schools is entitled for the benefits of RBA.
Strategy & Policy Needed from Govt
Keep the politics & fearing the loosing of vote bank aside, the govt needs to rethink & revisit about their policies on reservations for the sake of humanity. They should remove the lacunas & shortcomings in the policy of reservations. They should introduce a bill which can ensure on time benefit under reservations. They should also check about each family getting benefit of reservations, a whole family takes benefits of reservation but this shouldn’t happen atleast in our education & employment sector, only half of the family members should be entitled for the benefits of reservations.
Furthermore, Govt needs to recheck about the areas coming under RBA category as maximum number of villages coming under RBA category has forwarded more than that of pre-existing ones. These areas were backward 20 years before; they now possess modern facilities like roads, hospitals, schools & colleges, connectivity & are still enlisted under RBA category. Let’s Hope that our Govt will bring a revolution for whole state by taking a review on the policy of reservations & come up with better policies & changes according to changing times.
The author is a Freelance Writer & can be reached at Kaleemgeelani11@gmail.com
The views in the article are authors own.