Madya Pradesh assembly clears OBC reservation bill, quota almost doubled to 27%

The Madhya Pradesh Assembly passed a bill on Tuesday increasing the reservation for Other Backward Classes (OBC) in the state to 27 per cent. The OBCs presently get 14 per cent reservation. The overall reservation in the state has now gone up to 63 per cent, which is in breach of the 50 per cent cap mandated by the Supreme Court. In March, the Congress government had issued an ordinance proposing the reservation. The ordinance was brought ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, but the grand old party still suffered a massive defeat at the hands of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). The BJP won 28 of the 29 Lok Sabha seats in the state, while the Congress could manage just one. Madhya Pradesh has now become the only state to offer 27 per cent reservation to the OBCs. On Tuesday, the state assembly cleared the Madhya Pradesh Lok Seva (Anusuchit Jatiyon, Anusuchit Jan Jatiyon aur Anya Pichhade Vargon ke Liye Arakshan) Amendment Bill, 2019 which increases the quota provided for reservation to OBCs. Presently, the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (SC\/STs) get 16 and 20 per cent reservation respectively in the state. The Kamal Nath-government had brought in the ordinance before the elections hoping to woo the OBCs, who constitute more than 50% of the states population. In March, Nath had also given his nod to the Centres proposal for 10 per cent reservation to economically weaker sections (EWS). The Madhya Pradesh CM had said that his government was committed to providing opportunities to all sections of the society. The Madhya Pradesh high court had put a stay on the ordinance on March 19. The Centre had announced a 10 per cent reservation in government jobs and educational institutes for the poor belonging to the general category. The quota is over and above the existing 50 per cent reservation to Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Other Backward Classes.