Andaman fumes over 27 per cent reservation for OBC

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Port Blair, Apr 12 (UNI) Andaman and Nicobar Islands today expressed deep concern over the recent Supreme Court's verdict on the 27 per cent quota for Other Backward Classes (OBCs) in higher education.

Andaman's Education Department Assistant Director A Ayaraju told UNI that five categories of people of these islands had been given OBC status by the administration, considering the tenure of their living in these remote islands but not according to their caste.

However, this OBC status was not being recognised by the National Commission for Backward Classes. This meant that if the students of these islands competed in Central institutes of higher education, they would not get any benefit. This reservation would turn out to be a loss for the people of these islands The recent SC verdict gave the Centre the green signal to implement the reservation policy for OBCs in elite educational institutions from the coming session. Reportedly, the 27 per cent quota would be implemented in a phased manner in the IIMs, he added.

Mr Ayaraju said students, aspiring to join the prestigious IIMs or other such institutes were now worried about their scope for being selected in these premere institutes.

''Reserving 27 per cent of the seats for the OBCs is injustice to other talented students. This judgement would be a disadvantage for many talented and deserving students,'' said Ashraf Ali, a student of these islands.

Experts feel that the verdict would only benefit a small fraction of students, who are planning to compete at the national level.

''The reservation is for Central institutes and we do not have any Central institutes over here. Very few students are going for the exams in Central institutes, but they are also not going to get any benefits, as the OBC certificates issued to most of the Andaman Students is not recognised in the national level,'' said Principal of a Government College, who do not want his name to be quoted.

About 90 per cent students in Andaman do not compete for the Central institutes of higher education, as students here get seats reserved in different states for higher education, due to the remoteness of this far-flung archipelago.

UNI SKR LL SW HS1832

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