In 2021, more than half the posts reserved for OBC teachers remain vacant in India's central universities, research institutes

This is according to the data released by the Union Minister of Education Dharmendra Pradhan in Parliament on August 2 and it has caused an uproar
Image for representational purpose only (Pic: TNIE)
Image for representational purpose only (Pic: TNIE)

Even decades after implementing reservations, more than half of the faculty posts reserved for OBC members remain vacant in all the central universities and research institutions combined — a total of 54 institutions across the country. This is according to the data released by the Union Minister of Education Dharmendra Pradhan in Parliament. Pradhan was answering a question posed by CPM's Nagapattinam MP M Selvaraj.

As many as 4821 of the 8617 seats reserved for OBC faculty members remain vacant across 45 central universities, IGNOU, seven IISERs and IISc. The case wasn't any different in the IITs, IIMs and IIITs too. Various socio-political organisations have been raising their voice over unfair representation for years now. Expressing their displeasure over the issue, the All India Federation of OBC Employees Welfare Association demanded filling up of these positions immediately. "We reiterate again our demand to 'scrap the unconstitutional provision of creamy layer' imposed on OBCs that has deterred the eligible candidates from availing the reservation policy and consequently the posts remaining unfilled for years," they said in a statement.

At the same time, over a third of the seats reserved for the faculty members from SC and ST faculty members are also vacant. A total of 6356 posts for SC faculty members and 3380 posts for ST faculty members are reserved a. However, 2608 SC faculty seats and 1344 ST faculty seats remain vacant. It is interesting to note that only eight ST faculty members are employed in all seven IISERs combined. They have 43 SC faculty members and 86 OBC teachers. In all 45 central universities combined, 3,348 SC,1898 ST and 3,564 OBC faculty members are employed.

While announcing the data, the minister added that the OBC reservation has been implemented at all levels. While acknowledging the gap in representation among the faculty, the government listed the schemes that it had implemented to solve the issue. At the same time, the minister added, "The onus of filling up the vacant posts lies on Central Universities, which are autonomously created under Acts of Parliament." 

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