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Social Change among SCs and STs

How does the constitution play role with respect to the SC and ST communities?

  • Constitution has recognized the less privileged and more disadvantaged groups based on some factors,
  • SC for their structural disadvantage based on the ritual status
  • ST for their geographical isolation and disadvantage.
  • Constitution has protected these communities through special safeguards and affirmative measures such as anti-discrimination, anti-atrocity etc.
  • It has provisions for positive discrimination laws such as,
  • Prohibition of the practice of untouchability
  • Protection of the right to the land and habitation
  • Provision of scholarships and reservations in education and employment.

What are the significant changes happened because of the upliftment policies?

  • The emergence of a generation of new educated middle class among SCs and STs mainly due to the reservation policies.
  • More and more first-generation SC and STs are motivated to break the glass-ceiling of social mobility.
  • Empowerment of these communities in all aspects i.e. social, economic and political.
  • Increase in aspiration to get a good and relevant education for employment.
  • Increase in the literacy levels of SCs and STs and drop-out rates are declining.
  • Gross Enrolment Ratio has improved in SC (19.1) in 2014-15 from (8.4) in 2005-06 and in ST (13.7) in 2014-15 from (6.6) in 2005-06.
  • Women participation is significantly improved in all arenas- from politics to education.

Which are the concerns associated with the empowerment of SC and ST communities?

  • Growing process of privatization of higher education seems to limit the social mobility prospects among the aspiring SCs and STs.
  • There is no reservation in the private sector employment for SC and ST communities where the largest number of employment opportunities exists and jobs in the Government sector is shrinking consistently.
  • Gender parity among SC and STs remains an issue as the women participation in higher education is far behind the men.
  •  Rural women from these communities are far behind the women living in urban areas.