India Education
OBC quota: Government ready to move apex court
Apr 15, 2007 - 5:07:14 PM

New Delhi, April 15 - The central government is likely to move the Supreme Court Monday seeking annulment of its March 29 order, which suspended the law for 27 percent reservation in higher central educational institutions for Other Backward Classes - students.

Asked whether the government would move the court Monday on the issue, Solicitor General G.E. Vahanvati told IANS, 'I think so.'

Law ministry sources said an application for the purpose had been drafted and vetted in line with the political consensus that emerged in a series of meetings that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had with leaders from the ruling alliance and the opposition last week.

Various state governments too, at a meeting of state education ministers convened last week by Human Resource Development Minister Arjun Singh, expressed strong support to implementing the law from the next academic session beginning July.

They had asked the centre to seek a review of the apex court order at the earliest.

The government too need to act expeditiously on the issue as the six Indian Institutes of Management - have set April 21 as the deadline for announcing their final selection list for admissions in the coming academic session.

The application seeking review of the apex court's order is to reiterate the government's stand on the quota policy including the need to provide for reservation to the 'creamy layer' among OBCs.

Seeking to counter the court observation that the law cannot be implemented on the basis of the 1931 census data, the government is to extensively utilise the apex court order on the legality of implementation of the Mandal Commission report and reservation of 27 percent state jobs for OBCs.

The government is expected to contend before the apex court that when the OBC candidates could be granted 27 percent reservation in government jobs as per the Mandal Commission report that was largely based on the 1931 census data, there is no reason why the OBC students cannot be allocated 27 percent seats in higher educational institutions on the basis of the same data.

The sources said Solicitor General Vahanvati and Additional Solicitor General Gopal Subramanian would be the main law officers presenting the government's viewpoint before the court.

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