The Department of Welfare of Plain Tribes and Backward Classes (WPT & BC) was originally created as Tribal Areas Department in the year 1950. Later on, the Department was renamed as Tribal Areas and Welfare of Backward Classes Department in 1968. After the creation of Hill Areas Department to look after the affairs of the Autonomous Councils of the Hills districts, the Department’s name was further changed to Welfare of Plains Tribe and Backward Classes in 1976.
The WPT & BC Department has so far been performing the task of a Nodal Department for formulation and implementation of policies and programmes for welfare and development of the Scheduled Tribes, Scheduled Castes and Other Backward Classes in the State. The department is also vested with the responsibilities of implementing the provisions of the Assam SC/ST (Reservation of Vacancies in Services and Post) Act, 1978 & Amended in 2012 and rules framed hereunder. Accordingly, all matters connected with the welfare, employment, socio-economic upliftment and all measures and schemes designed for the promotion and development of Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Other Backward Classes falls within the domain of WPT & BC Department.
The role of the Department in operating in the vast areas as mentioned above has been further broadened in recent times with the increase in schemes, increasing demands for Government role in protection and preservation of ethnic cultures, creation of Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) and creation of development Councils to oversee the development of various OBC communities in the State. As the department looks after all the matters relating to three distinct social categories i.e. SC, ST and OBC’s having separate Plan allocations, the call for individual attention separately to each of these distinct social category has been the demand since long past. In view of this, Government has made a detailed study of the organizational structure of the Department and its functional relationship in implementation process of various tasks in terms of SCs, STs and OBCs.