Education Ministry Provides Clarity: Reserved Posts Cannot Be De-reserved, Upholds Draft UGC Guidelines
The Ministry of Education recently issued a clarification on the draft guidelines proposed by the University Grants Commission (UGC), emphasizing that reserved posts cannot be de-reserved. This move comes in response to the UGC’s draft guidelines suggesting that vacancies reserved for SC, ST, and OBC candidates could be declared unreserved if an adequate number of candidates from these categories are not available.
The ‘Guidelines for Implementation of the Reservation Policy of the Government of India in Higher Education Institutes (HEIs)’ are currently open for feedback from stakeholders. However, they have sparked criticism from various quarters, with the Congress alleging a conspiracy to end reservation for SCs, STs, and OBCs in higher education institution posts.
In response, the Ministry of Education and UGC Chairman M Jagadesh Kumar clarified that there has been no de-reservation of reserved category positions in Central Educational Institutions in the past and there will be no such de-reservation in the future. The Ministry of Education has directed all CEIs to strictly adhere to the Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Teachers’ Cadre) Act, 2019, ensuring that no reserved posts are de-reserved.
The draft guidelines also outline specific conditions under which a reserved vacancy may be declared unreserved, emphasizing that de-reservation will only occur in rare and exceptional cases. In instances where a sufficient number of SC and ST candidates are not available for promotion against reserved vacancies, such vacancies may be de-reserved and filled by candidates from other communities, subject to certain conditions and approvals.
This clarification by the Education Ministry and the UGC seeks to alleviate concerns surrounding the potential de-reservation of reserved posts, emphasizing the commitment to upholding the existing reservation policies in higher education institutions.
The draft guidelines are currently open for feedback, and stakeholders are encouraged to provide their input on the proposed changes to ensure a comprehensive and inclusive approach to reservation policies in higher education.
- Stay tuned for further updates as the situation unfolds.