Recently State Administrative Council (SAC) headed by Governor Satya Pal Malik accorded an approval for notifying 66 villages in J&K as backward areas thus bringing these villages in the category of Reserve Backward Areas (RBA).
After every two or three years a dozen or more villages are notified as RBA while as not even a single such village has been de-notified till date since this reservation came into existence.
There are many RBA villages which have facilities like degree colleges, english medium schools, technical institutions , better road connectivity etc, but they are still enjoying the reservation under RBA.
Many RBA villages have developed as towns having offices of Sub Divisional Magistrate (SDM), Tehsildar and Banks but they still want to be RBAs only to grab Govt jobs and admissions in professional institutions.
The ultimate sufferers in this vicious cycle are the youth who in-spite of being meritorious and belonging to lower economic strata do not get the benefit of RBA ? In addition to it, RBA areas which have developed as towns and commercial hubs are doing injustice with the actual backward villages in their tehsil or district
Case study Tangmarg
Chandilora village located 2 kms from Tangmarg tehsil of Baramulla district was declared as an RBA village many decades back, but as on date this is no more a backward village and in fact has developed into a town.
Office of SDM and Tehildar Tangmarg is located in this area plus there is a Degree College as well. Ferozpora village is mere ½ km from Tangmarg town having one of the best English medium schools (Tyndale Biscoe School Tangmarg), plus best road connectivity, but this area also is categorized as an RBA village?
Anantnag & Kulgam
In Anantnag district Kamad village is an RBA village located on Khanabal – Dooru road. The village is located 7 kms from Anantnag town having best road connectivity and all other facilities.
In comparison Gopalpora Kalan located on a Karewa in Shangus constituency is not enlisted as RBA? In Kulgam district Damhal Hanjipora was indeed a backward area until 10 years back but right now Damhal is a town having SDM Office, Degree College, Tehsil office, J&K Bank and few higher secondary schools. On contrary to this Gasirena village in Pahloo block of same area is not enlisted as a backward area.
In Chadoora sub division of Budgam there are many villages which are located mere 15 to 20 kms from Srinagar city but they continue to be backward areas (RBAs).
These areas were indeed educationally backward until 10-15 years back , but after getting benefits of RBA reservation the socio economic condition has altogether changed. Renowned schools of Srinagar and Budgam ply their school buses in these areas. Now the students have access to better education as well.
On contrary to this students and job aspirants from villages in upper Chadoora & Chararsharief like Jabbad, Neegu, Kutbal, Bonen, Branwar, Darwan, Nagbal, Chalyan Choontnad etc which are also enlisted as RBAs are not able to compete with the students and job aspirants in RBA villages located around Chadoora town.
The literacy rate in these villages is still less than 40 % and getting Govt jobs is a dream for most of the young men & women.
Political parties have used RBA as a vote bank and that is the reason they keep on adding more and more areas to this list. Now it is the right time to de-notify at least 50 % villages that have made progress both financially and educationally.
In-fact Advisor to Governor Khurshid Ahmad Ganai has agreed to look into this issue seriously and has assured to empower the J&K Backward Classes Commission to de-notify many RBA villages that are no more backward as on date. This is the only way to do justice with economically and educationally backward areas