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Indian state declares 30% quota for rural candidates

Dec 27, 2012

India's northeastern state of Assam is all set to bring to effect 30 per cent reservation in government jobs to candidates from villages of Assam.

Chief Minister of India's northeastern state of Assam, Tarun Gogoi, has announced that 30 per cent state government jobs will be reserved for candidates belonging to rural areas from next year end.

"In order to achieve inclusive growth and facilitate decentralisation, we are planning to bring to effect 30 per cent reservation in government jobs in all sectors to candidates from villages of Assam," Gogoi said at a press conference in New Delhi.

The Chief Minister also proposed a Rural Administrative Service in Assam which will extensively and comprehensively administer at Panchayat level in all sectors.

"Rural administrative services operating at the grassroots are important to facilitate devolution of power for effective administration, which often remains neglected. This will also check the sub-contracting of developmental projects," he said.

Gogoi said the rural administrative service will ensure countryside deputation and this will solve the problem of reluctant officers, who prefers not to leave capital city Guwahati.

In the backdrop of the recent violence in the state, the Chief Minister informed that only 21,749 people out of 4,85,000, who were displaced and rendered homeless, were in relief camps now.

"While rehabilitating the victims, the forest land rights and tribal belts and blocks rights have been ensured and proper mechanism followed," Gogoi said.

"Voter identity cards for 87 per cent population is under process, out of which 80 per cent have already been photographed. From there on, updation process of 'National Register of Citizens' will be easy," Gogoi said.

Assam is the only state in the country where Election Commission has not issued voters identity cards.

Gogoi said foreigners with Indian roots, who were separated during partition, may be rehabilitated in the state on humanitarian grounds.

"Foreigners who have faced insecurity, discrimination in their parent country, and who were initially Indians will be allowed to reside in the state on humanitarian grounds," he said.

To tackle the alleged rampant corruption in the state, Gogoi asked the people to file complaints against the corrupt.

"We hardly receive a complaint on corruption, so to order a probe on corruption does not arise. Citizens should file complaints of their grievances on corruption to the concerned authority," he said.

The Chief Minister said his government has taken several steps for security of women. "Social activist and civil policing should be at work and most importantly men should respect women," Gogoi said.

In India, reservation is a form of affirmative action designed to improve the well-being of the most backward and under-represented communities defined principally by their 'caste' (quota-system based on 'gender' or 'religion'). In the year 1993, in order to empower women, a constitutional amendment in the subcontinent called for reservation of one third of village council leader, or pradhan, seats in gram panchayats for women.

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