The All India OBC Students Association (AIOBCSA) has asked the central government to offer reservations to students belonging to other backward classes (OBC) in state-level agricultural universities and colleges. In a letter written to the minister of agriculture and farmers’ welfare, Narendra Singh Tomar, the student body highlighted that students from SC, ST communities get reservations in both central and state-level agricultural universities, however, for OBC students the reservation is limited to central universities only.
The student body claims that every year, 605 undergraduate, 569 postgraduate, and 209 PhD level seats are lost as the state agriculture universities do not offer the reservation.
The students’ body said that the OBC quota, like SC and ST reservations, too should be extended to state-level agriculture universities and colleges “to establish equality and social justice”
“We request to take necessary actions to implement the 27 per cent OBC reservation in AIQ seats of both central and state agricultural institutions in agriculture and allied courses,” the letter stated.
Under all India quotas, 15 per cent and 7.5 per cent seats are reserved for SC and ST candidates in both state and central level agricultural educational institutes, however, reservation for OBC candidates is restricted to central universities only, states the letter seeking extension of the 27 per cent OBC reservation to state agricultural universities enrolling students based on ICAR AIEE — the entrance exam for undergraduate, postgraduate and PhD level courses in state agricultural universities.
Last year, Union Health Ministry has announced that it will implement reservation laws meant for both Other Backward Classes (OBCs) and Economically Weaker Sections (EWSs) in the all-India quota (AIQ) scheme for undergraduate and postgraduate medical and dental courses from 2021-22. The demand for OBC quota in AIQ was raging in courts and outside for the last few years.
AIOBCSA had earlier sent letters to 542 Loksbaha and 237 Rajyasabha members asking them to raise the demand for conducting Caste Census 2021 in Parliament. The AIOBCSA believes reliable data is required to uplift the social, educational, and economic status of people belonging to the OBC category. Several State assemblies including Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Maharastra, Tamil Nadu, and Telangana have passed the resolutions and urged the Union Government to conduct the Caste Census.