Centre revises OBC caste certificate format

Centre revises OBC caste certificate format

With government job seekers from Other Backward Class (OBC) facing difficulty in getting reservation benefit due to faulty caste certificates, the government has now revised the format to include a number of castes and communities that were added to the list over the years.

The move by the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) comes as the government found that intended beneficiaries were facing trouble in availing the benefits as the form prescribed 21 years ago had not updated the fresh inclusions.

A set of instructions was issued in September 1993 for providing OBC reservation in services and posts under the government. A format for the caste certificate was prescribed in November 1993 along with the list of castes and communities treated as OBC till that time.

Since then, a large number of castes and communities have been added to the central list of OBCs through various resolutions of Union Social Justice and Empowerment Ministry. The format also prescribes that the certificate issuing authority should certify that the candidate does not belong to creamy layer. However, the details of the resolutions subsequent to the September 1993 resolution do not find mention in the existing format, which led to discrepancies.

A senior official said the DoPT has been receiving complaints from candidates belonging to OBC about the problems they were facing.

The officials cannot issue accurate caste certificates in the absence of later additions under relevant rules and regulations.

In order to clear this anomaly, the official said fresh guidelines have been issued, including the fresh additions. The DoPT consulted the National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC) before deciding on revising the existing format.

“The caste certificate issued by district authorities concerned mention the name of the caste and community of the applicant but the specific resolution under which the said caste or community was added on in the central list of OBCs is not indicated,” the official said. This led to procedural problems, he added.

“All the certificate issuing authorities are requested to mandatorily mention the details of the Resolution (Number and Date) by which the caste/community of the candidate has been included in the central list of OBCs and also to ensure that he or she does not belong to creamy layer as amended from time to time,” the official said.

The DoPT has also asked state governments to advise the issuing authorities on the revised format.