Affluent sub-castes among backward classes may be excluded from the quota list, observes the Supreme Court

Syllabus: GS-I

Subject: Society and Social Justice

Topic: Welfare schemes, mechanisms, laws and institutions related to SCs. 

Context: The Supreme Court’s Constitution Bench is examining whether affluent sub-castes within backward classes should be included in reservation policies.


  • Punjab’s 2006 reservation law, which gives preference to specific sub-castes within SCs, is under scrutiny.
  • It argues that sub-classification improves equality by prioritizing the most marginalized groups.
  • Supreme Court asked, why affluent sub-castes shouldn’t compete with the general category.
  • It emphasizes the need to balance equality and affirmative action.

+1 Advantage (for Mains):

In 2010, the State High Court struck down the provision in the E.V. Chinnaiah case, which held that only the President was empowered to categorize a group as SC under Article 341 of the Constitution.

 Article In News:

Article 341: It empowers the President of India to specify certain castes, races, or tribes as “Scheduled Castes” for the Constitution.

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