NEW DELHI: In a major step aimed at pushing reforms in the education sector, the Narendra Modi government has tabled the Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Teachers' Cadre) Bill, 2019 in the Lok Sabha. The bill will help in filling up 7000 existing vacancies in the central universities by direct recruitment in teachers’ cadre in accordance with a new quota system.
The bill was tabled in the Lok Sabha days after it was cleared by the Union Cabinet.
According to the Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD), the bill has been tabled with an aim to give a major push to reforms in the education sector, making it inclusive and keeping in mind the aspirations of the people from different categories.
The bill, if passed by the Rajya Sabha, will replace the Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Teachers' Cadre) Ordinance, 2019, which was promulgated by the Centre on March 7 this year.
The Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Teachers’ Cadre) Ordinance, 2019 provides for reservation of teaching positions in central educational institutions for persons belonging to the Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, and the socially and educationally backward classes.
The ordinance provides for reservation of posts through direct recruitment of teachers (out of the sanctioned strength) in central educational institutions. For the purpose of such reservation, a central educational institution is regarded as one unit.
The ordinance applies to ‘central educational institutions’ which include universities set up by Acts of Parliament, institutions deemed to be a university, institutions of national importance, and institutions receiving aid from the central government.
However, it excludes certain institutions of excellence, research institutions, and institutions of national and strategic importance which have been specified in the Schedule to the Ordinance. It also excludes minority education institutions.
The bill tabled in the Lok Sabha will address the long-standing demand of persons belonging to Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes/ Socially and Economically Backward Classes and ensure their rights envisaged under the Constitution and provide 10 per cent reservation to the Economically Weaker Section.
According to the MHRD, the bill is expected to improve the teaching standards in the higher educational institutions by attracting all eligible talented candidates belonging to SCs/STs/SEBCs/EWS.
If the Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Teachers’ Cadre) Bill, 2019 becomes a reality, colleges and universities will be providing reservation for teaching posts as per the total strength of the institute. The bill is a deviation from the existing norm where reservation is provisioned according to the sections or departments within the university.
The University Grants Commission had announced in March last year that an individual department should be considered as the base unit to calculate the number of teaching posts to be reserved for the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe candidates, following an order by the Allahabad High Court in April 2017.
The Supreme Court had in February dismissed a review petition filed by the HRD Ministry after its special leave petition against the court order was rejected by the apex court.
This was met with protests from teachers and students across the country following which the government brought the Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Teachers’ Cadre) Ordinance, 2019.