Supreme Court refuses to stay Andhra Pradesh High Court verdict on minority quota
New Delhi, June 11 (ANI): The Supreme Court on Monday refused to stay an Andhra Pradesh High Court order quashing a 4.5 per cent sub-quota for minorities in educational institutions and government jobs.
Instead, the apex court pulled up the Central Government for appealing against the order of the Andhra Pradesh High Court, and pointed out that the former had not presented any material to show how it had arrived at a figure of 4.
5 percent reservation.
The Supreme Court also refused to admit the Central Government's appeal, or issue any notice till the latter produced the records it had based its recommendation for a sub-quota on.
In its appeal, the government contended that the Andhra Pradesh High Court had taken an erroneous view while striking down the provision, despite the fact that the government had decided to provide the sub-quota after conducting an extensive survey.
The two-judge Supreme Court bench of Justices K.S.Radhakrishnan and J.S.Khehar asked the government to produce the records on Wednesday.
The Congress-led UPA government had announced the sub-quota of 4.5 per cent for socially and educationally backward people belonging to minority communities on December 22, 2011, ahead of key assembly elections in five states, including Uttar Pradesh and Punjab. It envisaged carving this sub-quota out of the existing 27 per cent quota for Other Backward Classes (OBCs).
Many political parties, including the BJP have objected to this.
On May 28 this year, an Andhra Pradesh High Court's division bench had struck down the government's sub-quota for minorities, and held that the Centre acted in a casual manner. The High Court said that the government Office Memorandum (OM) creating the sub-quota was based on religious grounds and not on any other intelligible consideration.
No evidence has been shown to us by the learned Assistant Solicitor General to justify the classification of these religious minorities as a homogeneous group or as more backward classes deserving some special treatment. We must therefore, hold that Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists and Zoroastrians (Parsis) do not form a homogeneous group but a heterogeneous group, the high court bench had observed then.
Minority Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid had then said that the government would move the Supreme Court against the order. he government says the issue cannot be delayed as counselling for the IITs will take place on June 13 and admissions are also on for various universities. (ANI)