A petition was filed by Young for Equality organisation and Dr. Kaushal Kant Mishra against the bill providing 10% reservations in jobs and education for economically weaker sections in General category, just a day after it was cleared by Rajya Sabha.
The plea seeks to nullify the bill saying that in the 1992 decision in Indra Sawhney VS Union of India case, also known as Mandal Commission case, a constitution bench of court had “specifically stated that the economic criteria cannot be the sole basis for reservation under the constitution.”“…such an amendment is hence, vulnerable and ought to be struck down as it merely negates a binding judgement.”
According to the plea, the bill violates basic features of the constitution as reservation on economic ground cannot be limited to the general categories and the 50% maximum limit cannot be violated. It also argues that the policy was in violation of the equality principle enshrined in Article 14 of the constitution. “By way of the present amendments, the exclusion of the OBCs and the SCs/STs from the scope of the economic reservation
Essentially implies that only those who are poor from the general categories would avail the benefits of the quotas. Taken together with the fact that the high creamy layer limit of ₹8 lakhs per annum ensures that the elite in the OBCs and SCs/STs capture the reservation benefits repeatedly, the poor sections of these categories remain completely deprived,” the petition said.
The Rajya Sabha approved it with 165 voting in favour and 7 against on Wednesday, a day after Lok Sabha had accepted the constitution (One Hundred and Twenty Fourth Amendment) bill, 2019.
The bill was passed after the house declined five amendments moved by opposition members.The quota will be over and above the existing 50 per cent reservation to SCs, STs and Other Backward Classes (OBCs).