New Delhi: Amid strong opposition demand for continuation of reservation policy in institutes like AIIMS, government on Wednesday assured Lok Sabha that it would issue orders to this effect if the Supreme Court gave unfavourable verdict on a review petition filed by it.
"I assure the House that our current policy is valid today and it will remain valid tomorrow also. If the apex court gives an unfavourable verdict, we will consult the Attorney General and issue a GO (government order) to ensure that the policy remains in place in future too," Law Minister Kapil Sibal said after opposition members raised the issue.
After the Supreme Court turned down the reservation policy for SCs/STs and OBCs in AIIMS, the government had filed a review petition on August 14 and an urgency application before the apex court three days later, he said.
This was done "as the entire House was concerned that there should be no change in the reservation policy for the weaker sections," Sibal said while agreeing with the contention of JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav.
Yadav raised the issue during Zero Hour saying the apex court verdict could be overturned "only through an amendment in the Constitution."
He said that despite assurances, the government has not brought any such amendment as yet, even after the verdict. "There has to be a solid, permanent solution to this problem and it cannot be done without amending the Constitution."
The JD(U) chief was supported by members from various parties including SP, BSP, RJD and the Left.
Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad, who is also President of the AIIMS Governing Body, said the apex court verdict would not affect the promotion of doctors to the posts of Professors and Assistant Professors.
Raghuvansh Prasad Singh (RJD) protested the decision of UPSC of "suddenly" changing the pattern of examinations for civil services and making English compulsory. He was supported by several members across party lines.