UP cabinet accepts report on OBC reservation in urban body polls

The UP government is likely to present the report before the Supreme Court within the next two days following an approval from the state cabinet.

Published: 10th March 2023 09:28 PM  |   Last Updated: 10th March 2023 09:28 PM   |  A+A-

Caste, OBC, Caste Census

Image used for illustrative purposes only. (Express Illustrations | Amit Bandre)

Express News Service

LUCKNOW: The Uttar Pradesh cabinet, on Friday, approved the recommendations of the ‘Backward Classes Commission’ constituted to look into the issue of reservation to OBCs in the urban local body elections which are due in the state and said it would be presented before the Supreme Court where the matter is sub-judice.

State Urban Development Minister AK Sharma said that the report was submitted to CM Yogi Adityanath on Thursday night and it was taken up at the cabinet meeting on Friday.

Sharma said that a provisional notification regarding the local body elections was issued on December 5. After this, some petitions were filed in Allahabad High Court which ordered the state government to set up a dedicated commission to conduct an empirical study on the backwardness of the OBCs within the urban local bodies (ULB) and recommend the reservation.

The minister said that after the approval of the report by the state cabinet, the UP government was likely to present it before the Supreme Court within the next two days. He also stated that the state government was committed to providing complete reservation to the OBC category in local body elections.

The High Court had asked the state government to go ahead with civic polls without any reservation for OBCs. He added that the High Court had issued the order on December 27, 2022, and the state government had set up a five-member “Uttar Pradesh State Local Bodies dedicated Backward Classes Commission” on December 28, 2023.

Meanwhile, the UP government had approached the Supreme Court against the High Court order which had stayed the reservation process and had directed the state government to conduct urban local body polls before March 31. The Supreme Court stayed the High Court order on January 4.

In fact, the UP urban development department had made a provision of 27 per cent reservation for OBC mayors and chairpersons.

The commission was set up under the chairmanship of retired Justice Ram Avtar Singh and it was asked to fulfil the mandate laid down under the triple-test formula and compile the report by March 31.

The UP government had told the apex court that it would get the elections conducted after an empirical inquiry to study the nature and effects of backwardness on OBCs across the urban local bodies in the state by the five-member commission. It had also assured the apex court that reservation of the seats for OBCs would be announced in urban civic bodies on the basis of the commission’s report.

The next hearing in the case is scheduled to take place on April 11.

Meanwhile, the commission collected the facts and figures from the 75 districts and summoned the data on the OBC population within the localities from the local administration.

As per the highly placed sources, the 350-page confidential report comprises the district-wise details of other backward classes. “It is believed that the OBC statistics are different from what was available so far,” said the sources. 

The sources claimed that on the basis of the recommendations, a major change in reservation configuration on mayoral, municipality chairman and Nagar Panchayat chief seats was expected. Moreover, many unreserved seats may be reserved for OBCs following the recommendations of the report.


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