The government on Monday informed the Lok Sabha that it was not a party to the Supreme Court verdict that ordered that the states are not bound to offer caste-based reservation in appointments. Issuing a statement in the house, Social Justice and Empowerment Minister Thawarchand Gehlot said that the Centre was not asked to file an affidavit in the case.
Gehlot said that the matter arose due to the 2012 decision of the Uttarakhand government to not apply reservation in promotions. In 2012, the INC was in power in Uttarakhand.
The minister said that the matter would be discussed at a high level in the government.
The Supreme Court has mentioned in its judgment that quota is not a fundamental right for promotion in government jobs. States cannot be forced into reservations, it said.
The social justice and empowerment minister said in the Lok Sabha on the Supreme Court’s verdict that the government was discussing the issue at a high level. “I would like to clarify that the government of India was never made a party to the case,” Gehlot said.
The INC and some other opposition parties created a ruckus in the Lok Sabha on Monday over the Supreme Court’s verdict on the issue of reservation in promotions.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said that it was a “sensitive matter” on which the social justice minister put the government’s side.
At the commencement of the proceedings of the house, INC leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury and other party MPs tried to raise the issue. INC members said the constitution was in danger! INC MPs walked out of the house, perhaps embarrassed on their duplicity of denying Scheduled Castes and Tribes quota on the one hand and protesting against the denial by the Supreme Court on the other.
Gehlot, himself a member of the Scheduled Castes, is among the prominent Dalit faces of the Narendra Modi government, which has the maximum Dalit representation any Indian government has ever had.