By kamlesh Tripathi
I love reading columns of Jug Suraiya for the simple reason that he tries to humour-ise issues that tickles the common man of India, and this column is no different. Indians have this habit of getting stuck in their past by either glorifying it or condemning it. But there is a reason to. Most Indians did not have a bright and boastful future to look forward to, so they remained in their past. And that includes the famous story of Indian caste-ism. But India is fast changing now where 60% of Indian population is demographically young, ambitious and upbeat—and at below 35 years of age, where they aspire to be in the global arena where reservations don’t work.
And coming to Jug Suraiya’s point below that the so-called—creamy layer is beginning to benefit disproportionately; I would only like to put forward the great example of the ‘Indian gas subsidy’ which many Indians gave up because they could afford it, without subsidy. And I am more than sure that the creamy-layer of the OBC too has a heart that beats for their non-creamy-layer brethren.
Writes Jug Suraiya,
‘The National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC) has asked the government’s permission to sub-categorise OBCs-other backward classes-into three separate divisions; the merely backward, the even more backward and the most backward.
The reason is that there is a growing apprehension that the so-called ‘creamy layer’ among the OBCs are benefitting disproportionately from the 27% job quota reserved for backward castes at the expense of the most backward. So if all goes according to the NCBCs plan, the country will see a multiplication of OBCs; the backward, the backwarder and the backwardest.’
Read the entire column:
CASTE ONE’S LOT
How India marches ahead by going backwards
By Jug Suraiya
India is a unique country in many ways. And one of the uniquer ways that it is unique is that in order to get ahead it goes backwards, literally.
The National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC) has asked the government’s to sub-categorise OBCs—other backward classes- into three separate divisions; the merely backward, the even more backward and the most backward.
The reason is that there is growing apprehension that the so-called ’creamy layer’ among the OBCs are benefitting disproportionately from the 27% job quota reserved for backward castes at the expense of the most backward. So if all goes according to the NCBCs plan, the country will see a multiplication of OBCs; the backward, the backwarder and the backwardest.
Similarly among dalits there are the regular dalits and then there are the mahadalits, who are supposedly more dalitical than the ordinary dalits. Ever since Mandal, the politics of what might be called competitive backwardness has gained momentum with not only more and more people claiming even greater backwardness.
Backwardness has become a prized commodity, like gold or diamonds, and everyone wants a chunk of it. For instance, the Jat community—which is known for its assertive forwardness in getting its own way in all manner of things- is aggressively pressing its demand to be classified under the OBC rubric. Demands have also been raised that Muslims and Christians too should be given backward quotas within their respective folds, which is all the more intriguing in that many converted to these faiths in order to escape caste system.
With everyone racing in reverse gear to get backward –and then even more backward- status, India will witness a boom in backwardness, which will become one of the fastest growing industries in the country. Indeed, backwardness has made so much progress that in some places so-called upper castes, like Brahmins, are laying claim to be designated as backward.
If this trend continues, we can pride ourselves on having devised the world’s only society that is truly back-to-front.
By Jug Suraiya