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Jammu Kashmir

Posted at: Jun 14, 2018, 12:43 AM; last updated: Jun 14, 2018, 12:43 AM (IST)

Reservation rights elude backward area residents

Vikram Sharma

Tribune News Service

Jammu, June 13

A large number belonging to the Reserved Backward Areas (RBA) category in villages across the state are deprived of their reservation rights.

The long pending demand of people, particularly of women, is left unfulfilled under the RBA provisions of the state.

“Under the provisions revised in 2006, a woman marrying a man under the RBA category has to wait for 15 years to be included in the reserved category. Besides, the government has made the revision of the RBA certificate cumbersome. One has to reapply for it every five years,” said Kewal Sharma, president, J&K RBA Forum.

He said as per the earlier provision, women were immediately included in reservation after marrying an RBA category man, but since 2006, vide a government order, the RBA status to married women is denied for 15 years.

“Further a provision was also amended for children born to the RBA parents. A child could only be given an RBA certificate if his annual family income is less than Rs 4.5 lakh and he is has studied in a government school,” said Sharma.

He said the forum had also sought relaxation in the provision of family income of the child. A delegation of the forum that met Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti recently had submitted a memorandum of demands to her, but no action has been initiated so far.

“The Chief Minister had assured to redress all issues of the RBA category people on priority, but nothing has been done,” the forum president said.

Shenaz Ganai, National Conference MLC, said, “In 2014, I had raised the issue in the Legislative Council and Amrit Malhotra, then Chairman, had passed the directions to the government to look into the matter, but nothing has been done so far.

Ganai said since the state was ruled by a woman Chief Minister, it is high time that the issues of women were addressed. “Mehbooba Mufti should come up with a new rule or an SRO to help the RBA people.”

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