Caste, affirmative action and discrimination in India

Type Conference Paper - Ten Years of War Against Poverty Conference Papers
Title Caste, affirmative action and discrimination in India
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2010
Affirmative action has been at the heart of public policies towards the socially disadvantaged in India. Compensatory discrimination policies which have been adopted for the Scheduled Castes (SC) and Scheduled Tribes (ST) since independence are now available to Other Backward Classes (OBC). We examine why OBC have lower living standards, as measured by per capita household consumption expenditures, relative to the mainstream population, and whether these reasons are similar to those observed for SC and ST. We find that while the causes of the living standard gap for the OBC are broadly similar to those for the SC and ST, the role of educational attainment in explaining the gap is higher in importance for the OBC.

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