Decoding the OBC Creamy Layer and Non-Creamy Layer in India

Posted On : April 6, 2024
Decoding the OBC Creamy Layer and Non-Creamy Layer in India
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An essential component of OBC is the Non-Creamy Layer and the Creamy Layer of Other Backward Classes. These are regarded as the government's means of interacting with the remaining OBC population members and assisting in the reduction of the unemployment rate. 

What is the Creamy Layer of OBC?

The creamy layer is sometimes referred to as the ahead class in the context of the UPSC Civil Service Exam. In India, it is sometimes referred to as the higher and lower castes. Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes with a high school diploma or its equivalent are considered to be part of the OBC's creamy layer. The Indian government has designated members of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes as Other Backward Classes (OBCs) since they belong to backward classes in India. Because of their superior educational backgrounds and prevalence in elite positions like IAS, IPS, IFS, and so on, the advance classes, often known as the creamy layer, hold a distinguished status in Indian society.

What is the Non-Creamy Layer of OBC?

Backward castes and tribes that either have no formal education or have formal education that is not comparable to a high school diploma are referred to as non-creamy layer OBC. The government notification states that all other castes and tribes are considered non-Creamy layers of OBC and are not eligible for promotion. These castes are hence non-creamy layers are stated differently, the reason it lacks the Creamy layer of OBC is because they lack the necessary educational background.

Difference between Creamy Layer and Non-Creamy Layer

The following are some of the major differences between Creamy Layer and Non-creamy Layer;

  1. The castes and tribes that make up the Non-Creamy Layer of OBC are those that lack formal schooling. The percentage of India's total population that belongs to a given caste is used to compute the creamy layer of OBC. In Indian society, the creamy layer is hence associated with the upper caste.
  2. Different states have different non-creamy layers. The number of seats available for that specific type of government positions in that specific state will determine the outcome. On the other hand, the creamy layer is consistent across all of India's states and does not change from one to the next.
  3. The income threshold for the non-creamy layer is less than 8 lakhs, whereas it is higher for the creamy layer.
  4. Since it is classified as a forwarding class in India, the creamy layer of OBC lacks an education. On the other hand, the non-creamy layer has a level of education comparable to a high school diploma.
  5. The creamy layer can be admitted to these esteemed institutions through the OBC reservation category during IIT and IIM counseling days, while the non-creamy layer cannot be admitted through the reserve quota.
  6. The creamy layer is qualified for employment in India's civil services. On the other hand, positions in Indian Railway Services and Indian Forest Services are open to those from the non-creamy layer.
  7. The creamy layer is a crucial component and typically receives more jobs—not because of their qualifications, but rather because they belong to a higher caste and are more powerful than others. Because of the reservation quota, they have a higher probability of being admitted to IITs and IIMs.

Significance of Creamy Layer and Non-Creamy Layer

UPSC uses two key factors, the cream layer and the non-creamy layer of OBC—to distinguish between the backward classes. In addition to being mandated by this recruitment body, numerous other state governments including those in Tamil Nadu, Punjab, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, and many more also adhere to it. It is very difficult for students who passed the 10th grade or matriculation to prove they are eligible for OBC advancement into the IAS or IFS.

The UPSC hiring procedure takes into account both the creamy and non-creamy layers of OBC. An increasing number of job searchers are becoming aware of this idea and expressing interest in joining the UPSC. Therefore, the creamy layer and non-creamy layer of OBC are your best recruitment tools if you're also looking for a government job.


For job searchers, the distinction between OBC and creamy layer is crucial. It is the primary feature that distinguishes OBC's creamy layer from its non-creamy layer. As a result, if you're looking for a career and want to know about UPSC recruiting, consider their differences and make an appropriate decision. To know more about this topic, it is good to consult a good lawyer in your jurisdiction. For example, if you are in Kolkata, then better get in touch with a lawyer in Kolkata.


  1. What is the difference between OBC creamy layer and non-creamy layer?
    The UPSC uses two characteristics—the creamy layer and the non-creamy layer—to distinguish the backward classes. The socioeconomic status of the two levels is the primary distinction between them.
    1. Creamy Layer: This group, which includes Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes with a sufficient level of education, is often referred to as the advance class.
    2. Non-creamy layer: This is a reference to underprivileged castes and tribes whose educational background is either nonexistent or not comparable to a high school diploma.

  2. Who is eligible for OBC non creamy layer?
    To be eligible for OBC non Creamy Layer, the following two criteria must be fulfilled;
    1. You have to be an Indian citizen.
    2. Your parents' yearly income must not exceed Rs. 8 lakhs.

  3. What is the creamy layer limit for OBC?
    The OBC creamy layer has an annual income cap of ₹8 lakh. An OBC candidate is said to be in the creamy layer category and is not eligible for reservation benefits if both parents make at least ₹8 lakh a year.

  4. What is OBC 1 and OBC 2?
    OBC1 is the term for the Creamy Layer of Other Backward Class; individuals in this category are wealthier than those in OBC2, which is the Non-Creamy Layer, because they come from better backgrounds. OBC2, which is less privileged and non-creamy, benefits whereas OBC1, which is creamy, does not.
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Dear client, the status depends on the salary your family gets with the cap being 8 lakhs per annum. Usually, gross income will be calculated for the determination of the creamy layer status. Depending on that answer, your third query can be answered. Thank you
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