After 26 yrs, panel to review OBC ‘creamy layer’ criteria

  1. Government has set up a panel headed by BP Sharma to review the creamy layer criteria for Other Backward Class(OBCs) set by the Prasad Committee in 1993.It will also give recommendations for redefining, simplifying and streamlining the concept of creamy layer.It will keep in view the apex court observations in Indira Sawhney case.
  2. Other Backward Class(OBC) is a collective term used by the Government of India to classify castes which are socially and educationally disadvantaged.
  3. In 1980,Mandal Commission was set up by the erstwhile government.It estimated the OBC population at 52% and classified 1,257 communities as backward.It recommended increasing the existing quotas,which were only for SC/ST,from 22.5% to 49.5% to include the OBCs.Its recommendations were implemented by the then government in 1990.
  4. In Indra Sawhney case,1992 Supreme court had upheld the caste-based reservation for the OBCs as valid.The court had also said the creamy layer of the OBCs should not get the benefits of reservation.
  5. At present,27% quota in government jobs and educational institutions is given to OBCs,provided the annual income of the family is up to Rs 8 lakh.Those with higher earnings are referred to as the ‘creamy layer’ and are not eligible for reservation.
  6. Creamy layer is a term used to refer to the relatively wealthier and better educated members of the Other Backward Classes (OBCs).They are not eligible for government sponsored educational and professional benefit programs.