Orphans to get 1% reservation in Maharashtra

Orphans to get 1% reservation in Maharashtra

In an unprecedented move, Devendra Fadnavis led Maharashtra government on Wednesday announced a one per cent reservation in the open category for orphans in the state. Officials say that perhaps, Maharashtra is the first state to bring such a policy. Pankaja Munde, minister of women and child development department said that the historic decision is aimed at

In an unprecedented move, Devendra Fadnavis led Maharashtra government on Wednesday announced a one per cent reservation in the open category for orphans in the state. Officials say that perhaps, Maharashtra is the first state to bring such a policy.
Pankaja Munde, minister of women and child development department said that the historic decision is aimed at social and economic empowerment of children who grow up without parents in orphanages. Officials however clarified that children whose parents have passed away will not be considered as an orphan in this case, only children who have no idea who their parents were and what their caste is will be covered under this reservation.

Munde said that this will help orphans get education and employment, especially in government services. “We have been working to bring this policy for a while now. This will help many children who otherwise find it hard to be assimilated in the mainstream,” said Munde.

Fadnavis had hinted that the government is looking to bring such a policy and at that time he mentioned the case of Amrita Karavande, a orphan who grew up in an orphanage in Goa but completed her education in Maharashtra.

 Amrita had appeared for the Maharashtra Public Service Commission (MPSC) exam but was falling short by a few marks to qualify for the general category and since their caste was not known she could not have been considered in other reserved categories. Amrita had written to Fadnavis regarding her problem and as there was no direct solution at that time, Fadnavis asked the government to look into it.
 Orphans do not know their caste or community. “During most exams or even for filling their school forms, there is a category that asks for their caste or category and not knowing that can be a hindrance in their education and even to get jobs,” said munde
The National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC) in 2016 had passed a resolution stating that destitute orphaned children should be included in the central list of Other Backward Classes (OBC), however there has not been any decision on this further, said a official from the state government.

Child rights activist and professor of law at Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Asha said, “It is welcomed if the government has agreed for a reservation for orphans as we have been demanding this for a long time now. Orphans must get a benefit because they are deprived of several things and a lot of them study in spite of great difficulties. However, care must be taken during implementation. There are several other schemes for orphans which do not reach them at the institutions they stay. That must not happen in this case.”

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