Odisha: Reservation for Government School Graduates in Engineering & Medical Colleges

The Odisha government has decided to introduce reservation in engineering and medical colleges for students graduating from state-run schools. A committee will be set up to finalise the details of the new reservation system proposed by the state government.

“The committee will submit its report within three months so that the recommendations can be implemented from the next academic year,” said Parliamentary Affairs Minister Bikram Arukha.

The Naveen Patnaik-led government also approved a proposal for all people’s representatives and government servants to submit property statements every year. The details will be kept in the public domain for transparency, said Arukha.

The proposals were approved by the cabinet at a meeting chaired by the Chief Minister.

“The quota in engineering and medical colleges for students passing out from state-run schools will be introduced from the next academic year,” said School and Mass Education Minister S R Dash.

“The objective of having such a reservation is to boost the morale of the students in the rural areas who are deprived of coaching and digital courses that are easily available in urban areas, which is why the students of rural schools are failing to compete with their urban counterparts,” the minister added.

Dash also confirmed that students passing matriculation examinations from state-run schools will be eligible to avail of the quota irrespective of their economic background.

“The number of government school students competing in entrance examinations has been declining in the past 10 years. Reservation will be a much-needed leveller,” said Bijay Kumar Sahoo, adviser cum-working president of the Odisha Adarsha Vidyalaya Sangathan

Notably, Odisha currently provides 33% reservation in MBBS courses, out of which 12% is reserved for ST students, 8% for SC, 5% for green card holders, 5% for people with disabilities, 3% for wards of ex-servicemen. The reservation categories are the same for engineering courses as well, with an additional 3% earmarked for students of the outlying Odia category.

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