Thu, 29 Sep 2022

New Delhi [India], September 20 (ANI): Attorney General of India KK Venugopal on Tuesday told the Supreme Court that the 103rd amendment was affirmative action for the weaker sections of the society and EWS reservation does not erode rights given to SC, ST, and OBC.

Advancing his arguments on issues relating to providing reservation on the basis of economic criteria, AG Venugopal said that this amendment is affirmative action for the weaker sections of society.

AG Venugopal said that EWS reservation does not erode rights given to SC, ST, and OBC and it is independent of 50 percent. He also said that the question of it exceeding and violating the basic structure does not arise.

A large population of this country who are meritorious will be deprived to apply for jobs in government service and educational institutions, AG argued and further said that the question of any special benefit being given to EWS in the general category cannot arise.

The constitution bench comprising Chief Justice UU Lalit, Justice Dinesh Maheshwari, Justice S Ravindra Bhat, Justice Bela M Trivedi, and Justice JB Pardiwala, was dealing with issues relating to the Constitutional validity of reservations on the basis of economic conditions.

The court is dealing with three issues suggested by the Attorney General including one whether the 103rd Constitution Amendment can be said to breach the basic structure of the Constitution by permitting the State to make special provisions, including reservation, based on economic criteria.

The constitutional validity of the 103rd Amendment Act, 2019 enabled the State to make reservations in higher education and matters of public employment on the basis of economic criteria alone.

A five-judge bench headed by Chief Justice UU Lalit had said earlier that the Janhit Abhiyan case will be the lead matter now.

Janhit Abhiyan's matter is relating to the challenging of the constitutional validity of the 103rd Amendment Act, 2019 which enabled the State to make reservations in higher education and matters of public employment on the basis of economic criteria alone.

Moreover, the Janhit matter is being heard together with a case filed by the Andhra Pradesh government against the High Court's decision of quashing its decision of granting reservations in education and public service for the entire Muslim population of the State in 2005. (ANI)

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