National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC) to get constitutional status

Lok Sabha has recently passed, "123rd Constitutional amendment Bill" that will provide "Constitutional status" to "National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC)".

What is 123rd Constitutional amendment Bill ?

At present the NCBC can only recommend inclusion and exclusion of castes from the OBC list and the level of income that cuts off the "creamy layer" among these castes from the benefits of reservation.

Following the passage of "123rd Constitutional amendment Bill" from both houses of the parliament and receiving of president accent, National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC) will be included in the list of constitutional bodies, this will enable the NCBC to enforce the safeguards provided to the Socially and Educationally Backward Classes (SEBCs) and solve their grievances.

The bill empowers NCBC to inquire into complaints of deprivation of rights and safeguards, and provide the commission the powers of a civil court to try a suit, summon anyone, require documents to be produced, and receive evidence on affidavit.

Article 338 of the Constitution

Article 338 of the Constitution provides for a "Special Officer" for the SCs and STs to investigate all matters relating to the safeguards available to them under the Constitution.

In current scenario, Article 338 of the Constitution also enables the "National Commission of Scheduled Castes", to addressed the grievances of the OBCs. It also says, once a commission decides who they are; SC/STs shall be construed as including references to OBCs as well.

The mandates of SC Commission were extended in 1990, when OBC reservations becoming a reality, these functions of SC Commission pertaining to OBCs will now be transferred to the new NCBC.

Way forward
People belonging to the OBCs will now be able to approach "National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC)" for addressal of their grievances related to non-implementation of reservations, economic grievances, violence, etc.

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