Reservations helped S. India

02Jul07

The unique feature of high rates of human development in the southern states of the country can be attributed to the encouragement given by these states to educate people through provision of caste reservations in educational institutions, according to a new book.

This (reservations) has not only increased the urge of the lower castes to educate but also helped to improve other human development indicators, the book, `Caste-based reservations and human development in India` by K.S.Chalam says. Chalam, a professor of economics at the Andhra University is member of the Union Public Service Commission.

“Allowing individuals to vote irrespective of their caste is not the be-all and end-all of democracy. Therefore the founding fathers of the constitution had incorporated caste-based reservations as one of the methods of achieving it. However, no attempts seem to have been made to assess the impact of this strategy in achieving the expected goals”, the author says.

“It is ironic that whenever an effort is made to review it, people are divided into groups as antagonists and protagonists. A dispassionate judgment on this important issue has remained an apparition”, the author says.

Citing UNDP figures, the author says the higher Human Development Index (HDI) in Kerala and Tamilnadu is found to be equal to that of middle-income countries. The high levels of educational and health indicators in Kerala, Tamilnadu and Karnataka suggest that pure economic factors alone are not responsible for these accomplishments.

Source: Zeenews



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