EWS quota provides social justice to the economically marginalised

Source: The post is based on the article “EWS quota provides social justice to the economically marginalised” published in the Indian Express on 9th November 2022. 

Syllabus: GS 2 – Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

Relevance: About social justice in India.

News: The Supreme Court has now upheld the validity of the 103rd constitutional amendment which provided 10% reservation for economically backward communities.

What are the salient features of the 103rd constitutional amendment?
Read here: 103rd constitutional amendment
What are the Supreme Court rulings on the 103rd constitutional amendment?
Read here: Supreme Court, in a majority verdict, upholds constitutional validity of EWS quota
Why reservation and representation are still relevant and crucial for ensuring social justice in India?

Social justice has been one of the cherished goals of the makers of our Constitution. In his book Why Socialism? Jayaprakash Narayan writes “Socialism is not a code of personal conduct but a system of social reconstruction.” He mentions Poverty, hunger, filth, disease, and ignorance for the overwhelming many while comfort, luxury, position, and power for the select few hampers India’s social justice.

Veteran socialist leader Ram Manohar Lohia was continuously vocal against the prevailing socio-economic disparities. His writings and speeches always inspired nuanced public debate on the issues of the socially and economically marginalised. Therefore, reservation and representation are crucial enabling mechanisms for millions of marginalised and dispossessed people in India

Hence, a) B R Ambedkar was instrumental in ensuring mechanisms for preferential treatment for socially marginalised sections in government education and employment, b) The EWS quota is a form of social justice for the economically marginalised.

Read more: EWS verdict underscores that judiciary has been a reluctant supporter of caste-based reservation
What are a few recent achievements in ensuring social justice in India?

a) After seven decades of independence, India witnesses the rise of a woman from a tribal community to the highest constitutional office in the country, b) Opening of more than 47 crore bank accounts under Jan Dhan yojana, a war has been unleashed on financial untouchability, c) India ensured a national bulwark to protect every citizen of our country, regardless of caste and community by providing more than 2 billion doses of Covid vaccines.

From Gandhi to Deen Dayal Upadhyaya and from the principles of Sarvodaya to Antyodaya, Indian leaders always ensured the enfranchisement of the sarvahara (proletariat).

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