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NCBC concerned over quota extension to entire Muslim community in Karnataka

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Bengaluru: The National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC) has expressed concerns over the Karnataka government’s decision to extend reservation benefits to the entire Muslim community. The move, aimed at providing reservations in educational institutions and government jobs, has drawn criticism from the commission for deviating from the principles of social justice.

The commission highlighted that while acknowledging the social and educational backwardness of certain castes and communities within the Muslim population, the blanket inclusion of all Muslims in the reservation category undermines the core tenets of social justice.

By categorizing Muslims as a whole under backward classes, the commission argues, the diverse needs and levels of backwardness among different castes and communities within the Muslim community are overlooked.

Currently, the reservation system in Karnataka includes 17 socially and educationally backward castes under category 1, while 19 castes fall under category A-2. Additionally, Muslims have been separately included in category 2B within the list of Hindu-dominated classes in the state.

The commission’s statement emphasised the potential injustice that could be inflicted upon various marginalized castes and communities within the Muslim population, particularly those identified as educationally and socially backward. It stressed the importance of recognizing and addressing the specific needs of these communities to ensure equitable access to opportunities.

Furthermore, the commission expressed apprehension regarding the broader implications of the reservation decision, particularly in the context of local body elections. With 32 per cent of reservations allocated for backward classes, including Muslims, in local body elections, concerns have been raised about the impact on the representation of diverse communities.

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