Human Resource Development Minister Arjun Singh has said the proposal of 27 percent reservation to Other Backward Classes in the Indian Institutes of Technology, Indian Institutes of Management and central universities is not debatable.
Singh said the issue should not create such a stir as Parliament had passed the Constitution Amendment Bill envisaging such provisions, which allowed for increasing reservations in central institutions.
The President has also given his assent to the measure. The government will decide on the proposed reservation for OBCs after the Assembly elections.
IIM (Ahmedabad) Director Bakul Dholakia had recently said any provision of reservation in institutes of high learning would affect the quality of students of the institutions but is also ineffective at such a late stage in the lives of the students.
The proposal, which has received criticism from both academics and the student community, will raise the level of overall reservation in these institutes to 49.5 percent.
Though JNU already provides reservation to OBC candidates by assigning each OBC applicant 5 points, other institutes and universities presently have a quota only for SC and ST students.
The institutes are, however, yet to receive any directive from the government regarding the reservation.
"We have not received any directive from the government and post the directive the institute will take a decision," said Probir Kumar Gupta, Director, IIT Kharagpur.
When contacted, both IIM (Bangalore) and IIM (Ahmedabad) refused to indicate the number of seats that will be left for general candidates after the proposed quota for the OBC.
The government's move follows the passage of the 104th amendment to the constitution which enables the centre to provide up to 27 per cent reservation and the states according to their need.
The Centre has already directed state governments to increase reservation for backward categories in the state-level institutions.