Government may move apex court on quota

Government may move apex court on quota

Tuesday, 03 April 2007, 05:00 Hrs
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New Delhi: The government is to convene an all-party meeting to evolve a consensus on its decision to move the Supreme Court, challenging its recent order staying the law for the caste-based educational quota.

Law ministry sources said the government has almost decided to seek a review of the Supreme Court order on quota, but before moving the court it might convene an all-party meet to arm itself with political consensus.

The sources said the all-party meet is likely to be convened after the two-day SARRC summit.The apex court had stayed the implementation of 27 percent reservations for students from backward classes in higher educational institutions, partly on the ground that the government had no valid caste data to substantiate its decision.

Law ministry sources said a constitution bench of the apex court, in the Indira Sawhney case on the implementation of the Mandal Commisssion report in 1993, had allowed 27 percent reservations for backward classes in state jobs on the basis of the same data.

Accordingly, there is no reason why the central law for 27 percent reservation in educational institutions cannot be implemented on the basis of the same data, they said.

Earlier, Congress spokesperson Satyavrat Chaturvedi told reporters that a review petition was being filed in the apex court to challenge its order staying the reservation for students from backward classes.

Chaturvedi disclosed the government's intent to move the Supreme Court on the issue, while expressing the party's reservation against a caste-based census for Other Backward Classes, saying such a move would divide the society.

"A caste-based census has not been held since Independence and such a move will divide the society," said Chaturvedi.

Union minister and eminent lawyer Kapil Sibal too indicated the government's intent to approach the apex court on the issue.
Source: IANS
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