Quota for OBC & EWS Reservation in Medical Education: RSTV - Big Picture

Rajya Sabha TV programs and discussions are very insightful and informative from a UPSC perspective. In this article, we provide a gist of the RSTV Big Picture debate on the OBC and EWS quota in medical education. This topic is important for the social issues section under the UPSC syllabus.

Quota for OBC & EWS Reservation in Medical Education:- Download PDF Here

Anchor: Vishal Dahiya


  1. Dr. A.K. Jain, Principal, University College of Medical Sciences, University of Delhi
  2. Dr. B. Srinivas, ADG, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, GoI


Govt has approved a 27% reservation for OBCs and 10% reservation for Economically Weaker Section in the All India Quota Scheme for undergraduate and postgraduate medical/dental courses (MBBS/MD/MS/Diploma/BDS/MDS) from the current academic year 2021-22. 

All India Quota Scheme

  • The All India Quota Scheme was introduced in 1986 under the directions of the Supreme Court to provide for domicile-free merit-based opportunities to students from any State to aspire to study in a good medical college located in another State. 
  • The All India Quota consists of 15% of the total available UG seats and 50% of the total available PG seats in government medical colleges.
  • The Central Educational Institutions Act (Reservation in Admission) became effective in 2007 providing for a uniform 27% reservation to OBCs; the same was implemented in all the Central Educational Institutions. But this was not extended to the AIQ seats of State medical and dental colleges.
  • The Union Government has now taken a historic decision to provide for 27% reservation for OBCs and 10% reservation for EWS in the AIQ Scheme. 
  • The OBC students from across the country shall now be able to take benefit of this reservation in the AIQ scheme to compete for seats in any State.
  • The scheme being a Central Scheme, the Central List of OBCs shall be used for this reservation. 
  • Around 1500 OBC students in MBBS and 2500 in post graduation will be benefited through this reservation.
  • Therefore, along with the 27% reservation for OBCs, 10% reservation for EWS is also being extended in AIQ seats for all the undergraduate/postgraduate medical/dental courses from the current academic year 2021-22.

Key Highlights

  • The students will be required to have the requisite certificates as per the norms of the central government. The admission will be conducted on the basis of Merit and Reservation.
  • The OBC students need to fall in the Non-creamy Central OBC List. 
  • The EWS students will be required to conform to the Central Government EWS conditions.

Disparity Discourse of Medical Education

  • In India, there is a wide scale disparity among the states in terms of availability of medical colleges.
  • However, the very nature of Medical Studies needs quality training in order to strengthen the health sector in India. The reservation assures students a better pan-India reach in terms of access to premier medical colleges and medical studies.
  • The reservation could help in spreading the medical services to the far-flung areas in the country.

Quality Assurance In the Medical Sector

  • In 2012-13, the conduct of NEET for medical colleges ensured the standardized selection of quality students.
  • The National Medical Commission is likely to conduct an exit exam called NEXT, which is most likely to be effective from 2023. The student will have to appear for an exit exam before getting a practice license. 
  • In order to ensure better training of the medical students, more than 150 district hospitals are in the pipeline to be converted into medical college hospitals.
  • A District Residence Program is in the pipeline as well where all the post-graduate students will be posted for a period of 2 months in rural areas.


  • The government has attempted to ensure a better platform for medical students through the reservation. 
  • The government is also engaging in continuous efforts with steps like the Exit Exam to strengthen the medical workforce of India.

Read all the RSTV articles in the link.

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