29 Jun 2020

OBC Quota in Medical Seats2 min read

Relevance for UPSC exam

In regards to the issue of OBC quota in medical seats, the Centre told the Madras High Court that it was in favour of providing State-specific reservations to Other Backward Classes (OBCs) in the seats surrendered by State governments to All India quota medical seats in non-central institutions subject to a condition that overall reservations should not exceed 50% of the total seats available every year.

Context of the issue

  • Private and government colleges are required to reserve 15% of their seats in the undergraduate courses to a common central pool called the All India Quota (AIQ). For postgraduate courses, the percentage of seats reserved by these colleges for the quota is 50%.
  • OBC quota for medical aspirants have been accommodated in the seats under the All India Quota since 1986 only in central institutions, and not in state-run colleges. The conflict is in regards to application of 27% OBC quota to all the All India Quota seats and not just central institutions.

Recent developments

  • Political parties from Tamil Nadu including DMK and AIADMK alleged that fewer seats were being reserved for OBC students and that the government must allot extra seats to compensate for the loss suffered by students.
  • DMK moved the Supreme Court seeking 50% OBC reservation in seats surrendered by Tamil Nadu in the All India Quota for undergraduate, post graduate medical and dental courses for 2020-’21, keeping up with the 69% reservation in Tamil Nadu. For the seats drawn from the States for the All India Quota, SC/STs are provided 15% and 7.5%. In the same way, OBCs should be provided at least 27%.
  • Since OBCs are only given a share of the seats in the Central government institutions but are denied state college seats, it has been claimed that the seats transferred to the general category is unjustified and unconstitutional. Had the seats remained in the States, the OBCs would have benefitted much.
  • Eg: Tamil Nadu has 1758 PG seats. Out of this, 879 seats are pooled for All India Quota. Of these 879 seats, the OBCs are not getting any reservation. Had the seats remained in the Tamil Nadu, as per their reservation policy, 440 seats would have gone to OBC students.
  • The center in its reply concluded that the number of seats could be increased proportionately with the cooperation of all States and on implementation of the State-specific reservation policy for SCs, STs and OBCs, the State governments would have to contribute to All India quota seats category wise, including the seats reserved for the physically challenged, by maintaining a reservation roster at college/State level.

Source: The Hindu

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