ndia is the only country in the world which has the reservation system. It will never abolish this system ever. The Maratha community needs a reservation because it will uplift the poor and uneducated Marathas. It will help them to compete in the world; otherwise, they will probably become modern Dalits. In spite of knowing the fact that the caste system is a curse for developing India, politics will never let it settle. Many educated, financially well people are enjoying the fruits of reservation and those who are economically backward are suffering. So far, minorities and Dalits enjoyed every facility in the name of reservation; now, the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly, unanimously passed a Bill without discussion that grants 16 per cent reservation to the Maratha community in education and government jobs. The Maratha community, which constitutes over 30 per cent of the state’s population, has been demanding reservation in the government jobs and education for a long time. The Dhangar community too was demanding a similar reservation. The Bill provides for the reservation of seats for admission in the educational institutions and posts in public services to Marathas who have been declared as socially and educationally backward class of citizens.
If you are one of those stubborn caste-based reservation supporters, who believe that the purpose of reservation is to help people who were ill-treated and rejected basic social rights, irrespective of whether they now need it or not, then obviously Maratha people do not need the reservation. We have to eradicate the caste system completely. Profession based castes were existing for thousands of years in India; however, their gradation resulted in social discrimination and then disrespect for each other. It had already created an imbalance in the society and the reservation (in education) has been the next big thing over the last 64 years. The communities belonging to the reservation quota have got sufficient time to recover from their backlogs in terms of fairness in education and government jobs. Now is the time when those who benefited from the reservation should work to uplift their communities instead of encouraging them to continue utilising the reservation? It will keep their social status as-it-is for ages. There won’t be sufficient willingness in the individuals from those communities to grow on their own. On the other hand, nowadays, people are choosing professions which were owned by some other caste in past. For example, a blacksmith may have chosen to become a goldsmith; or a carpenter is doing a dairy business (which has been possible just because of the kind of democracy we have). But the real issue is that if they have forgotten to show respect towards the other community.
Reservation will make the community weaker in the long run. The aim of the reservation system was to overcome social discrimination. Considering that one generation lasts for 25 years, this reservation system has already covered generations and still not all people from backward class (I personally don’t like to use this term) are well benefited from this. On the other hand, other communities which don’t have reservation quota, the situations have changed a lot over the past many decades. Not all people from these communities are wealthy. Despite getting good marks, they don’t get admissions easily for their favourite course or colleges. Even if they get the admission, fees are very high and there are no scholarships or concessions. Whereas there is the provision of scholarship and fee concession for people getting admissions through reservation quota, this has created unrest in the communities which don’t have a reservation quota. The Brahmin community is one of these communities who are demanding equal reservation in jobs and education. Brahmins are not like the oppressed section of people but they should also be considered for reservation. In India, there are many so-called Forward Caste people who are struggling financially for all reason that Dalit and Marathas are suffering. There are so many live examples to understand how a section of the so-called oppressed caste people get all the benefits though they are economically rich. Brahmins are no exception; they do suffer in many cases just like the oppressed castes. I personally feel equality is being denied to Brahmins due to caste just like it was denied by the so-called Forward caste people to the so-called oppressed caste. Reservation should not be seen as Tit for Tat. It should be considered as a chance of bringing equality. So, the concern to abolish reservation by the so-called Forward Caste is absurd. Similarly, ignoring economically backward Brahmins from the reservation is absurd too. Moreover, talented and deserving brilliant Brahmin’s opportunity and ability has been killed by the reservation policy of our country which gives facility only on the basis of caste. As a result of that, they left India and migrate to the west and established themselves. Most of the educated Brahmins are fairly settled in foreign countries by adding to their country’s development.
These days purpose of reservation system has changed by politicians from empowerment to a trigger point during elections to gain advantage out of it. Rather than creating harmony in the society, it is now creating unrest. Our country needs better schemes than the reservations to overcome inequality and provide equal opportunities to all based on talent. But this is going to take many years. There should be a reasonable cut off criteria for reserved seats. This is to make sure those courses like medical which deal with the lives of people will have good students. The seats remaining after filling up reservation quota students (meeting cut off criteria as said in point number 1) should be made open to all and strictly filled up according to the merit list. Fee concessions and scholarships should be offered based on economic conditions and not caste. With these changes, hopefully, everyone would get equal opportunity to get a quality education without compromises. My heart cries when people cry foul for reservations, if this is really required by them then I must console myself thinking that they can’t grow up themselves without the help of these partialities shown by our government even when they have access to everything.
(Any suggestions, comments or dispute with regards to this article send us on firstname.lastname@example.org)