In a major decision, the Andhra Pradesh cabinet recommended 5% reservation for the Kapu community on Friday, without impacting other BC communities and their reservation quota.
The cabinet took the decision after discussing the report submmited by the three-member Manjunatha Commission constituted for the purpose.
The State Assembly is scheduled to debate the subject on Saturday, following which a draft legislation will be sent to Governor ESL Narasimhan.
Stating that a new category BC-F will be created for the same, DC reported that the quota will be confined to education, government jobs, and financial benefits, and will not be applicable to political postings.
The Hindu reported that four communities — Kapu, Ontari, Telaga and Balija - will get reservation, which will see the reservation for BCs touch 34% in the state.
“Inclusion of Kapus has been a long-pending demand, and the Telugu Desam Party (TDP), in its election manifesto in 2014, promised to fulfil their demand. Since such a crucial decision cannot be taken with just an administrative order as it could be struck off by the court, the government appointed the Manjunatha Commission and took the decision based on its report...We will send it to the Centre for approval. Once we get the Centre’s nod, reservations for Kapus will come into effect,” Minister for Human Resource Development Ganta Srinivasa Rao told Hindustan Times.
Speaking to the Times of India, deputy chief minister N Chinnarajappa said, "The 5% reservation for Kapus will be over and above the existing quota in the state and when implemented, the total reservation will exceed the 50% cap fixed by the Supreme Court. Hence, we will be recommending the Centre to amend the Constitution so that reservation for Kapus can become a reality."
Tamil Nadu is the only state in India which has over 50% reservations in educational institutions, despite a Supreme Court order in 1992.
In 1994, the TN government got the Centre to amend Schedule 9 of the Constitution. Schedule 9 is a list of laws that state governments have brought in, that are exempt from any judicial review - which means that Tamil Nadu’s 69% quota for backward classes cannot be challenged by anyone in any court of law in India.
At present, Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao also wants to amend Schedule 9 in order to increase the Muslim quota to 12% in his state.
However, unlike KCR, Naidu has an ally in the Centre, as the TDP is part of the NDA government.