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Economically Backward Classes (EBCs)

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Citizens having annual income less than Rs.1 lakh and who do not belong to any disadvantaged social category such as Schedule Caste (SC), Schedule Tribe (ST)[1] and Other Backward Classes (OBC)[2] have been categorized as Economically Backward Classes (EBCs) in India. 

The term EBC is adopted in Dr. Ambedkar Post-Matric Scholarship for the Economically Backward Class Students (Centrally Sponsored Scheme) which is effective from 2014-15. Under this scholarships are given to Indian nationals belonging to General Category whose total income from all sources of the employed candidate or his/her parents/guardians in case of unemployed candidate does not exceed Rs.1 lakh per annum. Another scheme launched alongside this, Dr Ambedkar Central Sector Scheme of Interest Subsidy on Educational Loans for Overseas Studies for Other Backward Classes (OBCs) and Economically Backward Classes (EBCs) also adopts the same definition for EBC.

The Central Government had set up a Commission for the Economically Backward Classes in January, 2004. The Commission was reconstituted on 03.03.2005. The revised terms of reference of the Commission were as follows:


The Commission for the Economically Backward Classes submitted its Report to the Government on 22.7.2010[3].

The aforementioned scholarship schemes were launched for EBCs subsequent to the submission of this report.


1. “Scheduled Castes” means such castes, races or tribes or parts of or groups within such castes, races or tribes as are deemed under Article 341 of the Indian Constitution. “Scheduled Tribes” means such tribes or tribal communities or parts of or groups within such tribes or tribal communities as are deemed under Article 342 of the Constitution.

2. OBC is a collective term used by Government of India to classify castes which are socially and educationally backward /disadvantaged.

3. Source: Annual Report 2013-14 of Department of Social Justice & Empowerment


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