SC Issues Notice on Caste-Wise Census for Backward Classes


Soni Satti

The Supreme Court sought a response from the Centre, National Commission for Backward Classes and the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment on a PIL filed seeking a caste-wise census for Backward Classes.

According to the petition, the government is planning to conduct a national census in 2021.

With respect to this census a proforma was released containing 32 columns with details of SC& STs, Hindus, Muslim, etc. However, a column of Other Backward Classes has not been included in the proforma.

The plea argued that there is a clear provision in the Constitution under Article 15 (4 &5) and 16 (4 &5) for providing reservation to Backward Classes castes in education and employment sectors, without caste-wise census for the Backward Classes.

Under Article 243-D (6) of the Constitution there are provisions for providing Backward Classes in the local body. In the absence of caste-wise census, how the percentage of reservation of Backward Classes can be decided,” said the plea.

‘The number of Backward Castes in the central list of OBCs has now increased to 5,013 in 2006 as per the National Commission for Backward Classes, but no survey has been done by the government caste wise”, added the plea.

A letter was also written to the Union Minister pointing out the issues related to the backward community. The letter requested for a caste-wise census of backward classes but no reply has been received.

The petition has been filed by Advocate Anzu Varkey and drawn by Advocate Mahesh Chary.

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