At the start, let me make a candid acceptance that I have been in receipt of reservation benefit under PH3 category, and still I am against the blanket reservation given without merit angle applied to it. I don't demand to absolve reservation but seek merit based reservation, which will not lead merit and deserving student towards hatred of reserved category or worst towards depression and suicide. India being such a vast country and there has been huge population who are economically disadvantaged and for inclusive growth, we need to accept reservation as a ploy, however care should be take again misuse. I would strongly demand reservation for economically disadvantaged, differently able category of people, but no caste based reservation at all. I have consciously not used the statistics or specific examples to discuss advantage or disadvantage of reservation, as we are all well aware about the both merit and demerits. Also the misuse of reservation by politicians across the board is not hidden from anyone, and even the beneficiary knows about it.
Well Reservation should be given, but there is always a system which has to be adhered. Blind and irrational reservation which is motivated by vote bank politics has to be condemned.
Few points which I feel should be considered before giving reservation or devising reservation policy:
1. Reservation to be given only at initial years: Disadvantaged communities / people (Handicaps included) should be given reservation in primary school, as in giving opportunity to build the career, and then subsequent monetary assistance at subsidized interest rate be continued to the economically poor class. Providing monetary assistance to disadvantaged student is much more important to sustain the daily expense while studying, and avoid inferiority complex that can play havoc due to lack of basic amenities.
Giving opportunity at post graduate level is highly meaningless as ignoring merit, instead as suggested earlier, reservation should be given at start and not at the end of the tunnel where delivery on merit should be given importance and nothing more. Finally there should no reservation in seeking job, MERIT AND ONLY MERIT HAS TO BE APPLIED WHILE SELECTION OF CANDIDATE FOR JOB, no half baked measure in economy building. But “no reservation in job” has to be applied only after reservation at the initial stages has started.
Explanation for point 1 - An economically disadvantaged student getting opportunity at start with financial assistance will be better prepared to compete on merit and will not face inferiority complex at later stage. However, ignoring the merits and graduate or post graduate level affects the eligible student and also affects the output of the economy. This is fact because the reserved category candidate takes the lead over merit. Even if the reserved candidate is capable, the fact cannot be denied, one deserving candidate is denied his due place.
2. The Reservation must be correlated and capped: The reservation given also should not be blanket reservation, but be capped in correlation to the highest marks received in merit category, and only those reserved category candidate to be considered who are eligible in that capped demand. currently, even if reserved category students get just passing marks deserved the place in the school, which is to be abolished and merit oriented reservation should be considered
Explanation for Point 2 - Supposedly the course has 100 seats and reserved category seats are 5 within those 100 seats. The highest percentage in merit category received is 97%. The reserved category has to have a lower cut off but in correlation to 97% (highest marks), hypothetically, let’s assume calculated lower cut off for reserved category is 65%. Then only those students in reserved category shall get admission for those 5 reserved seats who have scored above 65%. If in scenario, only 3 reserved category students have scored above 65%, then remaining 2 seats to be awarded to merit category instead of inviting underperforming reserved category student. By this merit students get the opportunity and shall not lose their deserved place to underperformer in reserved category. This system will build in the competition among disadvantaged lot, and shall not assume the reservation as birth right.
3. Economic Reservation: There is talk that only one person of family should be given reservation and it should not be passed on to future generation of that family, as that family is already been taken care by being provided equal fighting status. However the idea is highly contentious and controversial, I would propose to abolish caste based reservation. The region based reservation can’t be debated for its inclusion. However only Handicaps and economically poor be considered for reservation, even if the reservation is already given to another member of family.
Having reservation and abolishing reservation are two extremes, where either of the category is at disadvantage, hence we should urge the policy maker to devise the reservation policy in a way that it assists both the category and the reservation as tool cannot be used for vote bank politics.