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NEET : Centre Moves Supreme Court Against Madras High Court's Order On OBC Reservation In All India Quota

Shruti Kakkar
19 Sep 2021 1:00 PM GMT
NEET : Centre Moves Supreme Court Against Madras High Courts Order On OBC Reservation In All India Quota
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The Supreme Court on Monday will hear a special leave petition filed by Centre challenging Madras High Court's order in which the High Court while upholding the validity of Centre's notification dated July 29, 2021, of implementing 27% reservation for Other Backward Classes in All India Quota seats of medical colleges had observed that 10% reservation provided to Economically Weaker...

The Supreme Court on Monday will hear a special leave petition filed by Centre challenging Madras High Court's order in which the High Court while upholding the validity of Centre's notification dated July 29, 2021, of implementing 27% reservation for Other Backward Classes in All India Quota seats of medical colleges had observed that 10% reservation provided to Economically Weaker Section ("EWS") could be permitted only subject to Top Court's approval.

The matter will be heard by a bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and BV Nagarathna. The petition is listed along two other writ petitions filed by doctors challenging the Centre's decision to bring EWS and OBC reservation in AIQ.

Case Before Madras High Court

The Madras High Court bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice PD Audikesavalu on August 25 in a contempt plea filed by the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) over the delay in implementing OBC reservations for AIQ seats of medical colleges in the State for the academic year 2021-2022 despite the High Court's earlier decision directing such an implementation had held that,

"Centre's notification dated July 29, 2021, implementing 27 percent reservation for Other backward Classes (OBC) candidates in All India Quota (AIQ) seats of medical colleges in Tamil Nadu may be permissible subject to the Supreme Court's formal approval of the same."

The Court had however expressed its reservations regarding the validity of extending a 10 per cent reservation for Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) in AIQ seats and thus observed that the same was not permissible without the Supreme Court's approval.

The Bench also held that there had been no 'wilful or deliberate' violation on the part of the Central government in implementing the High Court's earlier decision dated July 27, 2020 on this issue.

The contention of the DMK that OBC candidates must be eligible for 50 percent reservation as envisaged under the Tamil Nadu Backward Classes, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Reservation of Seats in Educational Institutions and of Appointments or Posts in the Services under the State) Act, 1993 was also rejected by the Court.

It was also held by the Court that the reservation provided by the Centre for OBC, Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe and Persons with Disabilities in its July 29 notification pertaining to reservation in AIQ seats appears to be in accordance with law.

"AIQ seats must be uniform across all States except in States which do not have any medical or dental colleges", the Bench opined further.

The Bench had observed that 'on the face of it, the provision of additional reservation above 50 percent as permitted by the 103rd Constitutional amendment appeared to fall foul of the Indra Sawhney case' but had refused to make any conclusive pronouncement on this issue since its validity was currently pending reservation before the Supreme Court's Constitution Bench.

Case Title: Union of India v. Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam and Ors


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