1. Introduction Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes have been identified as the two most backward groups of Indian Society. They include all such castes, races or tribes, which have been declared as scheduled castes and scheduled tribes by the Constitution of India under the provisions of Article 341 and 342 of the Constitution of India. Scheduled Castes generally represent those communities, which have suffered from the stigma of untouchability in one form or the other. Scheduled Tribes are generally those who have been living in seclusion in hills and forests, more or less untouched by modern civilization and development. Scheduled Castes constitute about 15 per cent of the total population of the country while Scheduled Tribes constitute about 7.5 per cent of the total Indian Population. Thus, together, these groups constitute a little more than one fifth of the total population of the country. When India became independent, it committed itself to a socially just and equal social order. The Constitution of the country, promulgated in 1950, recognizes the scheduled castes and the scheduled tribes as the two most backward groups needing special protection. A number of provisions have been made in the Constitution with a view to abolish all forms of discrimination and put these groups at par with others. Specific provisions for the reservation in services, in favour of the members of the scheduled castes and scheduled tribes, have been made in the Constitution of India are as follows:
Article 16(4) – Equality of opportunity in matters of public employment – Nothing in this Article shall prevent the State from making any provision for the reservation of appointments or posts in favour of any backward class or citizens, which, in the opinion of the State, is not adequately represented in the services under the State. As per article 335, the claims of the members of the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes shall be taken into consideration, consistently with the maintenance of efficiency of administration, in the making of appointments to services and posts in connection with the affairs of the Union or State. The main objective of providing reservation for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in Government services is not just to give jobs to some persons belonging to these communities, and thereby increase their representations in the services, but to improve the status of these people socially and educationally so that they can take their rightful place in the mainstream of society. Xth Plan profile of Higher Education in India under Para 10.B2 states as under: “To ensure the effective implementation of the reservation policy in admission, recruitment, allotment of staff quarters, Hostels etc. SC/ST Cells are established in the Universities.” The Commission is providing financial assistance to the Universities for the establishment of Special Cell for SC/STs. The purpose of these Cells is to help the universities in implementing the reservation policy with regard to the admission of students and the recruitment of teaching and non-teaching staff at various levels. Its function is also to help the SC/ST categories to integrate with the mainstream of the university community and to remove difficulties, which they may be experiencing. Such SC/ST Cells have already been set up in 109 universities up to the end of Ninth Plan.
Objectives i. To implement the reservation policy for SCs/STs in the Universities and Colleges. ii. To collect data regarding the implementation of the policies in respect of admissions, appointments to teaching and non-teaching positions in the universities, and in the affiliating colleges and analyse the data showing the trends and changes towards fulfilling the required quota. iii. To take such follow up measures for achieving the objectives and targets laid down for the purpose by the Government of India and the UGC. iv. To implement, monitor and evaluate continuously the reservation policy in universities and colleges and plan measures for ensuring effective implementation of the policy and programme of the Government of India.
Functions of the Special Cells
1. To circulate Government of India and Commission’s decisions and to collect regularly, on an annual basis, information regarding course-wise admissions to candidates belonging to the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in the Universities and Colleges for different courses, in forms prescribed, by a stipulated date, and to take follow up action, where required.
2. To circulate Government of India orders and Commission’s decisions and to collect information in respect of appointment, training of these communities in teaching and non-teaching posts in the Universities and Colleges, in suitable forms by a stipulated date and take follow up action where required.
3. To collect reports and information regarding the Government of India orders on the various aspects of education, training and employment of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes candidates, for evolving new policies or modifying existing policy by the Commission.
4. To analyze the information collected above and prepare reports and digests for onward transmission to the Ministry of Human Resource Development/University Grants Commission and such other authorities as may be required.
5. To deal with representations received from Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes candidates regarding their admission, recruitment, promotion and other similar matters in Universities/Colleges.
6. To monitor the working of the remedial coaching scheme, if approved in the affiliated colleges and university.
7. To function as a Grievances Redressal Cell for the Grievances of SC/ST students and employees of the university and render them necessary help in solving their academic as well as administrative problems.
8. To maintain a register for employment of SCs/STs in the University and Colleges for the candidates belonging to SC/ST communities for various posts in the university/colleges.
9. Any other work assigned from time to time to promote higher education among these two communities suffering economic, social and education deprivations.
10. The SC/ST Cell exclusively looks after the work related to SC/STs matters and no other work is assigned to the Cell.
11. If the required data is not submitted by the given date, UGC reserves the right to withhold either plan or non-plan grant until the required information/data is received. Hence, the universities/colleges are advised to supply the necessary information as required.
Eligibility/Target Group Financial assistance under the Scheme would be available to such Universities and Deemed Universities, which come within the purview of Section 2(f) and are fit to receive central assistance under section 12(B) of the UGC Act, 1956. The Scheme is meant for SC/ST only.
LIST OF MEMBERS
|1||Prof. T. R. Desai||Provost|
|2||Dr. Priyanshu Rathod||Convener|
|3||Dr. Alpesh Nasit||Member|
|4||Mr. Bharat Parmar||Member|
|5||Mr. K.D Kothari||Member|
|6||Dr. Pravin Trigar||Member|
|7||Mrs. Radhika Sernjaliya||Member|