The Political Economy of the Jat Agitation for Other Backward Class Status
Economic and Political Weekly
29 - 37 p.
India, Haryana, lower castes
The changing caste realities in Haryana and their links with economic processes became visible in the protests of the Jats for Other Backward Class status. The concerns of the Jats are embedded in twin processes initiated in 1991: the “Market” and the “Mandal.” Led by economic liberalisation, the job market demands certain attributes and levels of education and social skills to profit from its growth process. The implementation of the Mandal Commission’s report has facilitated the relative mobility of lower castes such as OBCs and Dalits through reservations in government jobs and education. The Jats have responded to this crisis by changing the discourse from one of domination to one that highlights their deprivation to bolster their demands for OBC status.