The Narendra Modi Cabinet on Monday approved a proposal for a 10% quota that is to be used to give reservations to economically backward sections of upper caste communities. The quota would require a Constitutional amendment to make it happen.
The Cabinet approval would give the government the go-ahead to explore amendments to Articles 15 and 16 of the Constitution. However, with only the Budget Session of Parliament left before the elections, it is highly unlikely that the government would be able to get such an amendment passed in time for coming 2019 lok Sabha elections.
However, a bill for the Constitutional amendment is likely to be moved in Parliament on Tuesday. Sources have said the new quota would have to be implemented in a 50+10 percent formula. This is meant to apply to direct recruitment and for admission in higher educational institutions.
The reservation for the economically backward sections of the upper caste communities cutting across religious lines are the intended beneficiaries of the quota.
The 'economically backward' tag would be applicable to 'upper caste' families that have an annual income below Rs 8 lakh, own less than five hectares of agricultural land, own homes smaller than 1,000 sqft, own residential plots below 100 square yards in notified municipalities or 200 square in non-notified municipality areas.