Lok Sabha passes Constitution amendment Bill to restore states’ powers on OBC list

Source: Indian Express

What is the News?

Lok Sabha has unanimously passed the Constitution (127th Amendment) Bill, 2021.

About Constitution (127th Amendment) Bill, 2021:

Main Purpose of the Bill:

  • The Bill amends the Constitution to allow states and union territories to prepare their own list of socially and educationally backward classes

Key Provisions of the Bill:

List of socially and educationally backward classes: 
  • The National Commission for Backward Classes(NCBC) was established under the National Commission for Backward Classes Act, 1993.  
  • The Constitution (One Hundred and Second Amendment) Act, 2018 gave constitutional status to the NCBC, and empowered the President to notify the list of socially and educationally backward classes for any state or union territory for all purposes. 
  • The 2021 Bill amends this to provide that the President may notify the list of socially and educationally backward classes only for purposes of the central government. This central list will be prepared and maintained by the central government.  
  • Further, the Bill enables states and union territories to prepare their own list of socially and educationally backward classes.  This list must be made by law and may differ from the central list.

Consultation with the NCBC:

  • Article 338B of the Constitution mandates the central and state governments to consult the NCBC on all major policy matters affecting the socially and educationally backward classes.  
  • The Bill exempts states and union territories from this requirement for matters related to the preparation of their list of socially and educationally backward classes.
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