Need to end domicile quota

Annual migration in the country increased from 3.30 million in 2011 to 9 million in 2016.

GN Bureau | April 5, 2017


#Working group on migration   #Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation   #domicile quota   #migrants  


 
Poor people face huge challenges when they migrate to other states in search of livelihood and one of the biggest stumbling blocks for them is the lack of ration cards because of which they are unable to make use of the Public Distribution System.
 
Not having a ration card is definitely a big issue and a much bigger hurdle is caused by the system of domicile which states have. Those who have domicile certificates enjoy quotas in schools, colleges as well as jobs. This is where it hurts the migrants most.
 
In a country like India, it is high time that domicile quotas are brought to an end so that everyone gets an equal opportunity to access the services provided by the State and no one is left out for not having a certificate.
 
Migrants constitute about 30% of the country’s population and also of the total working force. The recent Economic Survey noted that annual migration in the country increased from 3.30 million in 2011 to 9 million in 2016.
 
The domicile certificate is essentially a document that establishes a person has been a resident of a particular state and can avail various benefits.
 
The simmering hatred for outsiders in Mumbai is all the more reason that the country takes a conscious decision to do away with domicile certificates. Not just the poor, even people from the middle class find it difficult when they move to another state.
 
There are innumerable instances of meritorious students not getting admission in the college of their choice as they lack the domicile certificate.
 
We also need to ensure the portability of ration cards so that a person registered in one state can move to another state and simply produce the ration card there to avail the benefits. The misery faced by the poor migrants would then end.
 
The ‘Working Group on Migration’ set up by the Ministry of Housing & Urban Poverty Alleviation in 2015 in their report to the government recommended that the Protocols of the Registrar General of India needs to be amended to enable caste based enumeration of migrants so that they can avail the attendant benefits in the States to which migration takes place.
 
The Working Group suggested that States should be encouraged to proactively eliminate the requirement of domicile status to prevent any discrimination in work and employment. States are also to be asked to include migrant children in the Annual Work Plans under Sarva Siksha Abhiyan (SSA) to uphold their Right to Education.
 
 

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