SC dismisses review petition in quota row

SC has dismissed a petition seeking review of it earlier decision to allow Tamil Nadu to provide 69 per cent reservation to backward classes in excess of the 50 per cent limit imposed by the apex court in its earlier judgements.

New Delhi: The Supreme Court has dismissed
a petition seeking review of it earlier decision to allow
Tamil Nadu to provide 69 per cent reservation to backward
classes in excess of the 50 per cent limit imposed by the apex
court in its earlier judgements.

A three-judge bench of Chief Justice S H Kapadia and
Justices K S Radhakrishnan and Swatanter Kumar, in a
terse order, said it "found no merit in the petition" filed by
the NGO, Voice Consumer Care Council, and dismissed it.
The NGO had filed the review petition challenging the
apex court`s July 13 order on the ground that it had
erroneously allowed Tamil Nadu government to provide 69 per
cent quota, exceeding the 50 per cent limit.

The apex court had earlier on July 13 disposed of a
writ petition filed by the NGO in 1994 challenging the 69 per
cent quota law by directing the state to reconsider the same
in the light of the various judgements relating to reservation
of other backward classes.

It also permitted the state to increase the 50 per
cent limit in case the quantification of data about OBCs in
the state as determined by the State Backward Class Commission
justified such an increase.

Seeking review of the order, the NGO had contended
that when the validity of the law was before the court, the
case ought not to have been sent back to the Backward Classes
Commission for its discretion in determining the data.

The petition stated that neither in the judgement in
"M Nagaraj`s case"` nor in "Ashoka Thakur`s case" any such
data, much less quantifiable data as had been dealt with in
the July 13 order.

"In these two judgements, the Supreme Court had not
said that it would be possible for the state governments to
increase the quantum of reservation beyond 50 per cent," the
review petition said.
It quoted the ruling in the Nagaraj judgement wherein
it was held, "It is made clear that even if the state has
compelling reasons the state will have to see that its
reservation provisions do not lead to excessiveness so as to
breach the ceiling limit of 50 per cent or obliterate the
creamy layer or extended the reservation indefinitely."

The NGO also pointed out that in the Mandal case there
was a specific direction to identify the creamy layer, but for
the last 18 years Tamil Nadu had not identified the creamy
layer and a writ petition filed in this regard was still
pending in the Supreme Court.

But the argument failed to convince the apex court
which dismissed the review petition also.

PTI

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