THE GIST of Editorial for UPSC Exams : 17 June 2020 (A quota case: On quota politics(The Hindu))

A quota case: On quota politics(The Hindu)

Mains Paper 2:Polity
Prelims level:Affirmative action
Mains level: Indian Constitution- historical underpinnings, evolution, features, amendments, significant provisions and basic structure


  • Quota politics is back in play to favour, this time, students from government higher secondary schools in Tamil Nadu.
  • The Cabinet nodded on Monday for an ordinance to create a horizontal 7.5% reservation of the State’s quota of seats in medical colleges.
  • This is a well-intentioned move to address the problem of poor representation from government schools in MBBS/BDS courses which has been in existence even prior to the introduction of NEET for admission.

What do you mean by the Affirmative action?

  • Affirmative action is a policy in which an individual's colour, race, sex, religion or national origin are taken into account to increase opportunities provided to an underrepresented part of society.


  • The issue of inequity has come in for criticism against NEET which came into operation in Tamil Nadu in 2017.
  • Since then, there has been a high-decibel campaign, against NEET.
  • AIADMK government held that design and form of the test are loaded against students of rural areas, government schools, Backward and Most Backward Classes, and Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes.
  • Like in the case of other professional course entrance tests, most candidates clearing NEET in Tamil Nadu are invariably those who undergo private coaching.
  • Despite the authorities asserting that NEET is neither against communal reservation nor weaker sections, the campaign appears to have had an impact during the 2019 Lok Sabha polls as the DMK-led front won 38 out of 39 seats.
  • The State’s latest decision comes in the backdrop of this factor and also of next year’s Assembly election.

Legal scrutiny:

  • It is unclear whether the horizontal reservation will pass legal scrutiny.
  • In February 2002, the Madras High Court quashed the horizontal quota of 25% in professional courses for higher secondary students from schools in village panchayats.
  • This time, the State has acted on a panel recommendation.
  • Panel concluded that there ....................



  • The trend of horizontal reservation is happening with respect to national law universities for students from the host States.
  • It is debatable whether the test of backwardness can be stretched to any extent although the equity principle is important.
  • While poor representation in professional courses from the vulnerable sections is a symptom, the causes are deep-rooted.
  • A holistic and sustained approach to improve school education will alone pave the way for a lasting solution.
  • Affirmative action must go beyond the search for short-term political dividends.

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Prelims Questions:

Q1. With reference to the released draft Frameworks for ‘Sale of Loan Exposures’ and ‘Securitisation of Standard Assets’, consider the following statements:
1. Only transactions that result in multiple tranches of securities being issued reflecting different credit risks will be treated as securitisation transactions.
2. Standard Assets would be allowed to be sold by lenders through assignment, novation or a loan participation contract.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2
(d) Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: ..................................


Mains Questions:
Q1.  What do you mean by the .........................................