India, Jan. 12 -- A report that served as one of the premises for the constitutional amendment that reserves 10% of government jobs and college seats for the poor in the general category had, as far back as eight years, recommended limiting the benefits to non-tax payees and eschewing the income limit applicable to the so-called creamy layer, or rich, among the other backward classes (OBCs).

The 10% quota for the economically backward classes (EBCs) in the general category was approved this week by both houses of parliament and needs the signature of the President to become law. It was introduced and passed ahead of general elections this year and seen by some analysts as a move to soothe the anger of upper castes over the restoration of...