SC asks Govt to reapply for Minority Quota in OBC Reservations

New Delhi: Supreme Court today asked the government to move an application seeking a modification of its 2012 order refusing to stay an Andhra Pradesh High Court verdict which quashed a decision to provide for 4.5 percent sub-quota for religious minorities within the 27 percent OBC reservation.

A bench of Justice K.S. Radhakrishnan and Justice Vikramajit Sen asked the government to move an application if it was seeking the modification of the June 13, 2012 order even as Solicitor General Mohan Parasaran told the court there were conflicting orders.

Prasaran said that the apex court by its March 25, 2010 order had, while referring to the constitution bench the validity of 4 percent reservation given to Muslims under the Andhra Pradesh Reservation in Favour of Socially and Educationally Backward Classes of Muslim Act, 2007, allowed the continuation of the reservation till matter was finally decided.

The full bench of the high court had Feb 8, 2010 held as unsustainable 4 percent reservation given to backward Muslims under the the Andhra Pradesh act.

However, when the high court verdict of May 28, 2012 striking down the central government’s office memorandum providing for 4.5 percent sub-quota for minorities within the 27 percent reservation for OBCs in central educational institutions and jobs was challenged, the apex court June 13, 2012, referring it to the constitution bench, did not permit the reservation for minorities to get operational.

The office memorandum was issued Dec 22, 2011.

Referring to two orders, Prasaran said that though the core issue was the same but the court passed conflicting orders and sought its modification. He told the court that the only difference between the two was that one was that of the state government and other was that of central government.

However, senior counsel P.S. Narasimha opposed the plea saying that two were entirely different matters and since the matter was pending with the constitution bench, then what was the urgency. He described the move “absolutely political”.

Narasimha appeared for the respondent R. Krishnaiah.

The court allowed Prasaran to first file application seeking the modification of its June 13, 2012 order as Narasimha told the court that they have not even moved an application.