Thiruvananthapuram: The state government is reported to be in a likely controversial move by which the current system of 'floating reservation' designed to avoid the loss of seats of backward community students, will be withdrawn.
Admission notification for professional colleges is being delayed following a dispute between Higher Education Minister Dr KT Jaleel and Principal Secretary. While the minister has put a note that the existing floating reservation system should continue, the latter has recommended against it.
Following different opinions between the two, the chief minister put his note in the file asking the two to discuss and take a decision. Minister Jaleel is likely to discuss this matter with the chief minister on Wednesday.
Jaleel is said to have noted that in order for OBC (Other Backward Communities) to enjoy the full benefits of reservation, the floating reservatrion system should continue. It is pointed out that last year the benefit of reservation was available to an additional 222 candidates from Ezhava community and 188 from Muslims in admissions, including medical courses, thanks to application of floating reservation.
Jaleel highlighted in his file note that with the withdrawal of this mechanism, a corresponding number of seats will be lost to the communities s in question in professional college over the coming years.
Howecver, the Principal Secretary's note cites the proposal of Kerala State Development Corporation for SCs &STs.
'Floating reeservation' was introduced to obviate loss of seats for backward community candidates in profesional college admissions. As per this, a candidate selected under merit, but is also eligible for community reservation quota, can opt for a more convenient or preferred college under community quota. The merit quota seat, on which he got admission, will then be transferred to the preferred college's merit quota. In return, the community quota of the same college will be transferred back to the college where he got admission first. If floating reservation is done away with, the return transfer of the community quota does not happen, and thus will be lost to the community in question.
Government's Principal Secretary points out that through the floating reservation system, admission in certain colleges get limited to certain communities alone which thus affects academic standards.
The move to stop floating reservation by the bureaucracy came to light when originally Madhyamam brought it out on 14 October last. It was then that Higher Education Minister intervened in the matter, and after collectding relevant data, put a note in the file that it should continue.