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New cutoff for OBCs

What will be the total quota percentage now that OBC reservations have been allowed?

It will be 49.5 per cent (SC 15 per cent, ST 7.5 per cent, OBC 27 per cent) in most states. Some Northeast states such as Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland and Meghalaya will have a different break-up since they have a higher proportion of ST population. But the total will not exceed 49.5 per cent.

Which institutions will be affected?

All centrally funded ones, including central universities, IITs, IIMs, IIITs, IISERs, NITs, IISc, BHU, AIIMS, PGI (Chandigarh) and Jipmer (Puducherry).

Who make up the creamy layer?

Those with family income above Rs 250,000 a year. Also, children of doctors, engineers, chartered accountants, actors, consultants, media professionals, writers, bureaucrats, defence officers of colonel and equivalent rank or higher, high court and Supreme Court judges, all central and state government Class A and B officials.

The court has requested Parliament to exclude MPs’ and MLAs’ children, too.

When does the new quota kick in?

The Centre plans to introduce it in phases, likely over three years, starting from the 2008-09 academic year.

Will the number of general category seats shrink?

No. All the institutions will increase seats by 54 per cent over three years so that the number of general seats stays the same as now.

How many IIM and IIT seats will be set aside for OBCs?

OBCs will have 2,880 IIT seats and 530 IIM seats when the seat expansion is complete. The IITs will then have 10,472 seats and the IIMs, 1,925 seats.

Will there be separate cutoff marks for OBCs during admissions?

Yes, different from both the general cutoff and the SC/ST cutoff.

Will the identity of the quota students be kept confidential?

Impossible, since a separate cutoff means a separate merit list.

Will admissions for the next academic year be delayed?

Possibly in the IIMs, unlikely in the rest.

Do the IIMs/IITs have the infrastructure and faculty for the planned seat hike?

No, but some are better placed than others. Those likely to be hit the worst are the IIMs in Ahmedabad and Kozhikode, and the IITs in Mumbai, Roorkee and Guwahati.

Does the judgment have any impact on private institutions?

The court did not rule on the matter but one judge observed that such a quota would violate the Constitution if imposed on a private institution.

Will it have any impact on government job quotas?

No. But government jobs already have a 27 per cent OBC quota, with the creamy layer excluded.

Can the judgment be challenged?

The Centre may seek a review and anyone else can challenge the verdict — but it will go to the same bench

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