In a move to woo the voters belonging to Other Backward Classes (OBCs) before the crucial Assembly polls, Samajwadi Party government in Uttar Pradesh on Thursday cleared a proposal to include 17 OBCs in the Scheduled Castes list. The decision was taken at a cabinet meeting chaired by Chief minister Akhilesh Yadav. Notably, last week, the Narendra Modi government had included Fifteen new castes in the central list of Other Backward Classes (OBCs) with the government issuing notification in this regard. The National Commission of Backward Classes (NCBC) had recommended a total of 28 changes in respect of eight states: Assam, Bihar, Himachal Pradesh, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir and Uttarakhand.
Out of these 28, 15 castes, including Gadheri/itafarosh in Bihar, Jhora in Jharkhand and Labana in Jammu and Kashmir, were new entries, nine were synonyms or sub-castes of the castes which were already in the list and four were corrections.
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These changes in the central list will enable the persons belonging to these castes/communities to avail the benefits of reservation in government services and posts as well as in central educational institutions as per the existing policy. They will also become eligible for benefit under various welfare schemes, scholarships, etc., being administered by the central government, which are at present available to persons belonging to Other Backward Classes, it added.