Odisha Govt to proactively provide caste certificate to all ST, SC Students In Class 5

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Bhubaneswar: State Government has declared that all Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe students, studying in educational institutions shall be provided with SC ST certificates, universally, once they reach standard 5. On the occasion of celebrations of Birth Anniversary of Baba Bhimrao Ambedkar, Chief Minister has issued directions to the ST SC Development Department and Revenue & Disaster Management Department to ensure timely and effective implementation of his instructions.It has been decided that all students studying in class 5 and do not have caste certificate shall be universally covered under the program on a mission mode.

The objective of this decision is to ensure that all students belonging to ST SC community are not required to repeatedly visit the revenue offices for getting their caste certificates and upon reaching class 5 shall be proactively be provided with their respective case certificates. ST SC Development Department has already developed a draft guidelines in this regards. It is expected that by this proactive step of the State Government, more than 10 lakh students studying in class 5 will be benefited. For the first time, all students who are studying in classes higher than 5th standard shall also be covered, in case they do not have a caste certificate.

It has been decided that Head Masters of each school shall provide the application forms to the students, assist the students/ parents of students in filling up the form and collect the same. All such forms shall be collected by the Welfare Extension Officers and District Education Officers from their respective schools. These forms shall be handed over to the respective Tahsil offices who shall process the applications in accordance with rules.

After processing, all eligible applications shall be granted caste certificates. The certificates shall be provided to the Head Masters of the respective schools who shall distribute to the students. Chief Minister has directed that this program must be taken up on a mission mode and all students must be covered before the closure of current financial year.

It is expected that all the families belonging to Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe shall be benefited greatly. One they will not be required to visit the Tahsil office for getting the caste certificates for their children.

Another major decision is that all Caste Certificates, issued to the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe persons shall be permanent in nature and shall be valid for the lifetime of the holder. This implies that, once a Caste Certificate is issued to a ST or SC person, the same shall be valid permanently and the holder shall not be asked to produce fresh certificate every time. This will save lakhs of youths belonging to ST and SC communities from undue harassment in repeatedly getting fresh certificates. It has also been decided to keep all the newly issued caste certificates in digital format so that in the event of loss/ damage/ mutilation of the caste certificate, the parents or the students belonging to the ST SC communities can easily re-obtain heir caste certificates.

All Educational Institutions and Employing Organizations shall be instructed not to insist on submission of “Recent” caste certificate. Such insistence by certain institutions on “Recent” caste certificate has been causing undue harassment to the youths and keeping this in view, Chief Minister has taken this decision. Such a proactive step by the State Government is expected to provide huge relief to almost more than 20 lakh ST SC youths who are going to study and apply for employment in future.

State Government is going to take similar steps for all students belonging to the Socially and Educationally Backward communities and is expected to declare the rules in this regards very shortly. All students belonging to the SEBC/ OBC category shall also be covered with similar scheme in coming days very shortly.

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