Supreme Court verdict blow to ‘essence of reservation’: Congress

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New Delhi: The Congress Sunday said the essence of the reservation in the Constitution has received a blow after the Supreme Court decision on the issue of reservation in appointments and promotions, and alleged the rights of SC/ST communities have been constantly under threat during the BJP rule.

Congress General Secretary Mukul Wasnik, addressing a press conference at the party headquarters here, said the party will raise the issue inside and outside Parliament.

“This has come out only recently… the Parliament is in session and tomorrow (Monday) when the Parliament will meet certainly I do believe that some of our members will take up the issue… and when the parliament session gets over, then we will see how the situation unfolds,” he said.

The Supreme Court in a judgement held that there is no fundamental right to claim reservation in promotion and states are not bound to provide reservation in appointments.

A bench of Justices L. Nageswara Rao and Hemant Gupta said: “In view of the law laid down by this court, there is no doubt that the state government is not bound to make reservations. There is no fundamental right which inheres in an individual to claim reservation in promotions.”

The top court observed the state government has the absolute discretion to decide whether or not to provide for reservation or reservation in promotions. Also, the state government is not under any obligation to do so.

The verdict came on pleas regarding the Uttarakhand government’s September 5, 2012 decision, when the Congress was in power in the hill state, to fill up all posts in public services in the state without providing reservations to SCs/STs.

“We would like to know from this Modi Government, whether it believes that the right to reservation for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in government employment is a fundamental right or not. We would like to know from this Government of India, from this Modi Government, whether is the constitutional duty of the government to provide reservation for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in government employment or not,” said Wasnik.

Congress spokesperson Udit Raj, who was also present, accused the BJP government of being against Dalits and reservation.

The Congress also cited the submission of the counsel representing the state government in the top court.

“Ranjit Kumar, senior counsel appearing for the appellants in SLP Number 25508 of 2019, Mukul Rohatgi and P.S. Narasimha, senior counsel appearing for the State of Uttarakhand, contended that there is no fundamental right to claim reservation in appointments or promotions in public posts, there is no constitutional duty on the part of the state governments to provide reservations,” the Congress cited.

“These are the basic thoughts of the BJP about reservation; whether it is a fundamental right or not? Whether the state governments have a constitutional duty or not?” the Congress said.

IANS

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