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Saturday 17 December 2011

Koch-Rajbonshis back to Central OBC list

Koch-Rajbonshis back to Central OBC list

The peril of Koch-Rajbonshi candidates from Assam appearing in
different central government examinations has ended.
By a resolution passed by the Ministry of Social Justice and
Empowerment, Govt. of India, on December 8th, 2011, the OBC status of
Koch-Rajbonshis of the state of Assam has been restored [1]. It may be
noted that by an ad hoc bill passed on January, 1996, the ethnic
community was designated ST status, which was latter revoked within an
year. However the OBC status of the community was never added back to
the central OBC list. Time to time, several candidates appearing for
central level examinations conducted by UPSC, national sector banks,
etc., were denied special privileges available to other OBC
candidates. One of the victims, Mr. Hem Chandra Bora, a
Koch-Rajbonshi candidate from Nagaon, was denied OBC status on the
Engineering Services Exams, 2009, citing that the community was not
listed in the central OBC list for Assam. Mr. Bora raised a petition
in the Gauhati High Court for the discrimination against him by UPSC.
The high court issued a judgment on March 23rd, 2011, mentioning that
the government should take prompt action to revive the earlier rights
that were being enjoyed by the community as OBC [2]. The National
Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC), on receiving the notice from
Gauhati High Court, recommended to the Ministry of Social Justice and
Empowerment, that the OBC status of the Koch-Rajbongshis be restored.
The Government of Assam at various times has referred to NCBC the
case for Koch-Rajbonshis as 'Koch', 'Koch or Rajbongshis', 'Koch
Rajbongshi', 'Koch-Rajbongshi', 'Koch Rajbangshi', etc., and there was
a confusion regarding which term to use. So, NCBC sent a query to the
Assam Government for clarification. The Government of Assam replied
back on August, 3rd, 2011, to NCBC that the name that should be used
is "Koch-Rajbonshi".
On Nov,16th, 2011, the central Govt. approved the suggestions from
NCBC to amend the OBC lists for the state of Assam and a few other

Finally the much awaited justice is done to the community.
Koch-Rajbonshi is now in the central OBC list. [4]

NOTE: The candidates now still have an issue. Since many a times the
OBC certificates have been issued with different names
"Koch-Rajbangshi", Koch(Rajbongshi),
etc,, those certificates may need to be corrected to reflect the
suggested name "Koch-Rajbonshi".


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