3 lakh seats to be added by centrally funded Universities for 10% quota for EWS category

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The 10% quota for Economically Weaker Section will eventually increase the intake of admissions to higher education courses, which will lead to increase in the number of seats up to 3 lakh in the centrally-funded universities across the country including IITs, IIMs etc. The addition of the number of seats will be conducted in two phases over 2019-20 & 2020-21.

The government has also written to the states to implement the quota for “poor among forwards” in state-run institutions which means 255 increase in intake.

By 2021, it has been decided that the seats in IITs will be increased up to 5100, while in IIMs, the number will be 800. Universities like DU will be increasing 16000 seats, whereas Visva Bharati and JNU will offer 822 and 346 more seats respectively.

Currently, the intake of all Centrally-funded Universities is around 9.3 lakh seat which includes IITs, IIMs etc.

“Based on the seat matrix and reservation policy of 27% for OBC, 15% for SC and 7.5% for ST, the addition of 10% EWS seats will increase the intake by around 25%. This will be around 2.5 lakh to 3 lakh seats in central-supported institutions,” said a senior govt. official.

“However, for the final number of seats and requirements, we will wait for the institutions to send their submissions as the increase will be implemented in a phased manner based on the readiness of the individual institution,” added the official.

The Government introduced reservations for OBC’s in higher educational institutions in 2006, with a mandate that 27% seats will be reserved for persons from the backward communities.

In order to ensure that the percentage of seats for other categories are not adversely impacted, seats across HEIs were increased by 54%. The expansion was implemented in a phased manner till 2012. The government granted additional funds to the tune of Rs 2,166.89 crore to central universities and Rs 4,227.46 crore to centrally funded technical institutions for accommodating OBC quota.

Many universities, on receiving letters from the MHRD and UGC, have begun preparing their financial requirements.

“It is a positive step to ensure educational opportunity to economically backward sections. Moreover, this will also result in an overall increase in seats for other categories as well, which will be a significant expansion of higher education’s reach,” said Prof Bidyut Chakrabarty, vice chancellor of Visva Bharati.

Chakrabarty said the central government has assured financial assistance, which is a welcome move. Visva Bharati will submit its requirements before January 31.

The government has issued an official memorandum on the quota, asking all central educational institutions to compute their needs and implement the Constitution (One Hundred and Third Amendment) Act 2019 to provide reservation for economically weaker sections not covered under the existing scheme. The quota will begin to roll out in the 2019-20 academic session.
Meanwhile, the government is also working on the bylaws for the unaided (private institutions) so that they too can implement the reservation policy. According to the All India Survey on Higher Education, 2017-18, there are 25,383 private affiliated colleges, 343 private universities and 6,700 stand-alone private educational institutes in the country.



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