The Bengal government has come out with a notification providing 10% reservation for economically weaker sections (EWS) under the general category in government jobs and educational institutions, days after the Mamata Banerjee cabinet took the decision on July 2.
The government memorandum states that the applicant availing EWS quota has to obtain an “income and asset certificate” from Kolkata Municipal Corporation or from the district magistrate or subdivisional officer that the gross annual income of his/her family from all sources is below Rs 8 lakh and the person’s assets do not exceed five acres of agricultural land or a 1,000 sqft flat in the city.
The parameters for defining the EWS category are the same as the Narendra Modi government had announced for this category.
The notification also states that EWS reservation won’t apply to scientific, technical and certain other posts. Candidates won’t get the EWS reservation benefit during promotion. What’s more is that unlike the other reserved categories such as Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and OBCs, vacancies earmarked for EWS for a particular recruitment year can’t be carried forward if the authorities don’t find a suitable EWS candidate. The state government has asked departments to recast the post-based reservation rosters accordingly to incorporate the EWS category.
The state government, while keeping in mind the Supreme Court’s order on reservation, may also take to “squeezing” during recasting of reservation rosters so that the total reservation percentage remains within the SC-ordained 50% limit.
This is all the more necessary to fit the overall reservation (SC: 15%, ST: 7.5%, OBC: 27%, EWS: 5%) to 50% because the total reservation percentage adds up to 54.5%.
Going by the post-based roster format, the EWS candidate may stand a chance for the 20th post in a 100-point roster. But then, it clashes with the post reserved for SC. In that case, the EWS candidate may get the 21st post now kept for the unreserved category. Things may get worse in departments having fewer posts. In that case, the government can’t accommodate candidates under all reserved categories.
The situation becomes really difficult for candidates applying for the EWS quota in educational institutions — public and private. The government memorandum provides for EWS reservation in these institutions “in addition to the existing reservations and subject to a maximum of 10% of the total seats in each category”.
Source: Times of India