The HRD Ministry has decided to introduce Economical Weaker Section (EWS) quota in central educational institutes including IITs, NITs, and central universities. The student intake in higher education institutes run by the Centre may also have to increase by as much as 25 per cent to implement 10 per cent quota for the EWS. The reservation will begin from the next academic session which begins in July and executive order for the same will be out next week. The recent approval of Bill to enable 10% reservation for economically weaker sections in the general category.
Union HRD Minister, Mr. Prakash Javadekar revealed that the new Bill would create thousands of seats in higher learning institutes for EWS in general category.
Among the various alternatives which were discussed, there was an option to get institutes to increase their student strength by 25 per cent to incorporate the new 10 per cent quota, and making sure that the unreserved seats’ number does not shrink.
If this alternative gets chosen then the institute or university, they will have to increase its intake by eight percent for a three-year programme. In the case of a four-year programme, student admissions will see an annual hike of approx six percent for the next four years.
There is another option which is the creation of 10 percent supernumerary seats so for example if there are already 100 seats they just need to add 10 more seats, which will be supernumerary. The total student strength will still remain 100.
The financial implication of the increase in seats on the educational institutes is not clear at the moment. Even though the constitutional amendment of article 15 provides for reservation in private educational institutes, it isn’t clear yet if the government will implement this soon.
If a person’s family has a gross annual income below Rs.8 lakh then he will be listed as a beneficiary under the 10 percent quota. The family includes the person who will seek the benefit of reservation, his siblings below the age of 18, his parents, his spouse and children below the age of 18. This income will also cover sources such as agriculture, salary, profession, and business.
Families which have agricultural land of more than five acres, a house covering more than 1,000 square feet, a 200 yards plot and a 100-yard plot in a notified municipal area will not be able to benefit from this reservation.