For any politician in India, uttering the word Reservation would open up the can brimming with warms. Regardless of what they feel about it, regardless of what is the most pragmatic logic, they are compelled to walk on the political strings. But the question is ‘How long can we afford such political balancing acts?’ Those moments when you get the chance to make the history doesn’t come to you every day, and when such moment come we have to jump off the political strings and do what is truly necessary to build up the social equity, to bring opportunity to the last man standing in the queue. A very simple question which has been tossed many times before, however, remain unaddressed ever is, ‘Do we really need a caste-based reservation in its current form? This thought often comes to my mind when I see people, despite good educational degrees and sharp brains reel under joblessness and poverty. And, their only sin is that they do not belong to SC-ST or OBC category. Had they have belonged to that privileged community they might have got the job in reservation quota, but sadly they are born in Rajput, Thakur or any other upper-caste family.
What kind of social equity are we trying to establish when we snatch a job from a poor but meritorious general category student and gift it to the rich but a moderate SC-ST student? Can we make India a better place to live with such gross injustice? I have full sympathy for what people of SC-ST community have faced in the past, that discrimination shames every head down. But this is another set of injustice and indiscrimination happening with the meritorious youngsters of India.
So, what is the solution? Firstly, the Quota system needs to be knit with Aadhaar. Record of every family who claims reservation facility need to be monitored and a mechanism needs to be evolved so that no affluent class can avail this facility. The annual income of a family must be considered before giving reservation. On the other hand, candidates with low family income must get the preference, no poor candidate should be kept out just because word SC or ST is not inscribed on his/her Job Card. Secondly, there is a need to limit the Quota opportunity per family, only one or two members of a family should be given the benefits of reservation. When they get the job, they would be considered uplifted, so no need to offer reservation to any other in that particular family. Currently, families are enjoying the benefits of reservation for generations after generations, such misuse of reservation benefits need to be identified and stopped. Thirdly, Imagining establishment of Social Equality with the Reservation in Jobs is like giving incomplete treatment to a disease. Dream of Social Equality would remain a dream until we bring Equality in Education. There should be the similar quality of education in all the parts of India. There are few rural areas which don’t even have a school, then there are areas where school exist, but the SC-ST still faces the discrimination. As soon this inequality gets fixed, this disease would also be cured.
Last but not least, the Government must launch a scheme ‘Give Up Reservation’. When Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced the ‘Give It Up’ scheme for LPG and called on people to give up their LPG subsidy voluntarily, hardly had anyone imagined that millions of people would come forward and give up their subsidies, such as the magnificent charisma and fan-following of Narendra Modi. This magical effect of Modi can do wonder in fixing the faux pas in the reservation. PM Modi has exhibited unbelievably strong will when he stood for the rights of Muslim women and got the law passed against Three Talaaq.
It was not an easy decision, it was his moment of jumping off the political strings and he created the history. This gives me every reason to believe that only PM Modi can do such wonder again