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Wednesday, August 04, 2021

Reservation in local bodies: Maharashtra govt asks backward classes commission to collect empirical data of OBCs

The government notification stated that the commission will conduct “contemporaneous rigorous inquiry” into the nature and implications of the backwardness of OBCs in local bodies.

By: Express News Service | Mumbai |
Updated: July 4, 2021 7:32:58 am
OBC reservation in local bodies maharahstraOn March 4, the SC had quashed OBC quota in local bodies for want of empirical data on the backwardness of the community. (Representational Image)

Months after the Supreme Court scrapped 27 per cent Other Backward Class (OBC) reservation in local bodies, the state government has now entrusted the Maharashtra State Commission for Backward Classes to collect empirical data of OBCs.

The government notification, issued on Tuesday, stated that the commission will conduct “contemporaneous rigorous inquiry” into the nature and implications of the backwardness of OBCs in local bodies. The commission will submit a report to the state by recording facts and observations and also make suitable recommendations.

On March 4, the SC had quashed OBC quota in local bodies for want of empirical data on the backwardness of the community. The state’s review petition was rejected by the SC in the last week of May. The move has angered the OBC community and led the ruling and Opposition parties engaging in a blame game.

The government notification also asked the commission to ascertain the proportion of OBC population villages, talukas and districts in rural areas and wards in a municipal corporation, council and nagar panchayat in urban areas. It should be done on the basis of records, reports, survey and other available data, the notification added.

Government officials said that the state has not given a deadline to the commission to submit the report since it is a judicial commission.

“It is a huge task for the commission, which will collect data on 50 per cent of the population of the state. To fast-track the work, the commission has been given powers to outsource work to agencies like it was done while collecting data of the Maratha community,” said an official.

It may take around four months for the commission to submit a report to the government, the official added. “The commission may deliberate on the task and then submit a proposal on how to collect data and the manpower and funds required.”

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