[Reader-list] Yes to affirmative action, no to mindless quotas
Aditya Raj Kaul
kauladityaraj at gmail.com
Fri Apr 11 12:00:49 IST 2008
* Yes to affirmative action, no to mindless quotas
Aastha Manocha - The Indian ExpressPosted online: Thursday , April 10, 2008
*New Delhi, April 10: *The student community, especially the ones who had
protested against the increase in caste-based quotas is very pleased with
the Supreme Court's decision on the reservation issue.
United Students, a first student initiative which launched anti-caste based
reservation exactly two years back and which had even met with the then
president Dr APJ Abdul Kalam over the issue, feel that their stand has been
They say, 'we are not against quotas per se, we are all for affirmative
action, but only caste based quotas doesn't serve any purpose.'
The very first point that they had raised in their protests back in 2006 was
that the 1931 census or even the 1978 situation used by the Mandal
commission could in no way be applicable in present context, and this
judgment validates that fact.
This is not just a group that only makes a noise, a look at their website
shows a couple of studies and surveys on how to decide which groups are
actually in need of empowerment through reservation-like measures.
Although this is a success, it is but a first step, as they say that it
needs to be seen if the government even implements these SC directives. A
close watch needs to be kept and the government constantly monitored.
Presently, the government has been given a free hand as no time frame has
The stress on close monitoring by non-governmental body becomes all the more
important due to the fact that the creamy layer which has been excluded
includes ministers, bureaucrats and people in places of power who are bound
to find a loophole sometime.
Dhruv Suri, of IP University, further adds, 'the ultimate aim is to ensure
that all caste disparities disappear. So in that sense, it is a very welcome
judgment as the Supreme Court has given its nod to a new survey, which takes
into account not only the caste but also the economic indicators to decide
Now, he says, the priority remains to see the proper monitoring is done and
that the vision behind this judgment is carried out. Also due to such
reservations, in colleges and higher educational institutions, caste has
become a sort of deciding factor, which is sometimes used to taunt. 'We want
to move towards a situation where all caste disparity disappears because the
more you focus only on caste as the factor for granting seats, you are only
reinforcing the caste divide.'
Clearly, youngistan at work…
United Students - www.unitedstudents.in
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