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Maratha quota breakthrough: Maharashtra approves 10% reservation bill

Signaling a major breakthrough ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, the Maharashtra government has accepted a panel report on Maratha quotas and approved a draft bill recommending independent 10 per cent reservations in education and government jobs to the community, officials said here on Tuesday.

The Maharashtra State Backward Classes Commission (MSBCC)’s report and the draft bill will be tabled before the one-day Special Session of the Maharashtra Legislature this afternoon, with the prime agenda of Maratha quotas.

The MSBCC, chaired by retired Justice Sunil Shukre, submitted its voluminous report examining the backwardness of the Maratha community, to Chief Minister Eknath Shinde on Friday 16.

The panel’s recent statewide survey among 2.25 crore people found that the Maratha community comprises 28 per cent of the population in the state and is backward.

It said that a large number of castes and groups are already in the reserved category with about 52 per cent quotas, so it would be unusual to place such a huge community (Marathas) with a 28 per cent presence, in the OBCs category.

Accordingly, it said that 10 per cent of the total seats for admission to educational institutions, other than the minority education institutions specified in Clause I, Article 30 of the Constitution, and private education institutions whether subsidized or not by the state, and 10 per cent of the total number of direct service recruitments in the public services and posts under the control of the state, will be given.

Such reservation shall be ‘reserved separately’ for the socially and educationally backward classes, said the MSBCC.

For this purpose under the Act, the principle of advanced and advanced group shall be applicable' and the reservation under the Act shall be available only to the persons belonging to socially and educationally backward classes who do not belong to the advanced and advanced group.

The Maratha community is a backward class social and educational group, and should be specified as such a class under the Article 342C3 of the Constitution, and the reservation should be made available for that class under the Articles 15(4), 15(5) and 16(4) of the Constitution.

The MSBCC mentioned that there are exceptional circumstances which require the Maratha community to have a limited reservation of more than 50 per cent in public services and posts.

The Maratha community needs 10 per cent reservation each in public services and in admissions to educational institutions, said the MSBCC.

*Except for the heading, this story has not been edited by The enewstime.in and has been published from an agency.

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