Supreme Court rejects report of Maharashtra backward classes panel

IN YET one other setback to the Maharashtra authorities, Supreme Court docket on Thursday rejected the interim report of the State Backward Courses Fee, which had really useful restoration of 27% quota for Different Backward Courses in native our bodies.

“The report itself mentions that the identical is being ready in absence of empirical research and analysis by the fee. Having failed to take action, the Fee shouldn’t have filed the interim report,” mentioned a bench of Justices AM Khanwilkar and CT Ravikumar.

“Consequently, it isn’t potential to allow any authority, a lot much less the State Election Fee, to behave upon the suggestions made within the mentioned report. In the interim, we don’t intend to dilate on the correctness of every of the observations made by the fee within the interim report. We, nevertheless, direct all involved to not act upon the interim report as submitted,” the court docket mentioned.

The bench additionally directed the State Election Fee to inform the election course of in native our bodies the place it’s due with out additional delay and to adjust to its earlier order by which it had directed that the OBC seats be handled as normal class ones.

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On December 6, 2021, the apex court docket had stayed elections to the 27 per cent OBC class in Maharashtra native our bodies, stating that the state authorities earlier than deciding to earmark the quota had not adopted the obligatory triple-test laid down by it.

The triple take a look at requirement is a three-pronged standards arrange by the highest court docket in earlier judgments to mandate OBC reservation. It requires the state (1) to arrange a fee to conduct rigorous empirical inquiry into the character and implications of the backwardness qua native our bodies, inside the state; (2) to specify the proportion of reservation required to be provisioned native physique sensible in gentle of suggestions of the fee, in order to not fall foul of overbreadth; and (3) in any case such reservation shall not exceed combination of fifty per cent of the whole seats reserved in favor of SCs/STs/OBCs taken collectively.

On December 15, Supreme Court docket requested the Maharashtra authorities and State Election Fee to renotify the 27 per cent seats reserved for OBCs as normal class and maintain elections to them together with the polls to the remaining 73 per cent.

Subsequently, the state authorities moved an utility urging the court docket to allow it to conduct the remaining election on the premise of knowledge/knowledge already accessible with it regarding the OBC class.

The court docket, nevertheless, requested the state to provide the info accessible with it to the Maharashtra Backward Courses Fee in order that the fee could make appropriate suggestions to the state authorities.

Following this, Maharashtra once more approached the court docket, saying it had supplied the info to the Backward Courses Fee, which in an interim report, “thought it match to advocate, to revive and grant 27% reservation (which is already prescribed by numerous enactments) , excluding the areas notified by the PESA (Panchayats (Extension to Scheduled Areas) Act, 1996 and topic to permissible higher restrict of fifty% to BCC/OBC class in native self-government ie excluding statutory reservation meant for SCs and STs”.

However on Thursday, the court docket refused to simply accept the report.

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