Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Government defends exclusion of creamy layer

At the ongoing hearing of Dr.K.Krishna Murthy vs.Union of India at the Supreme Court this morning, the expected happened. While concluding his submission before the Constitution Bench, the ASG, Gopal Subramanium conceded that as a Constitutional lawyer, he would favour consistency in the definition of backward classes, whether it is for the purpose of Articles 14, 15 and 16 or for Part IX of the constitution, the subject of the current litigation. As for as the constituents of backward classes are concerned, the logic applicable to Articles 14,15 and 16 must also apply to Parts IX and IX A of the Constitution, he said. This was in response to Justice Raveendran's query whether the Government thinks that creamy layer must be excluded from backward classes for the purpose of reservation in Panchayats and municipalities.

While claiming that the setting is different under Articles 14, 15 and 16 (because they pertain to access to education and employment) as compared to Part IX and IXA (which deal with political participation), he conceded that the logic is the same. "The moment a person is considered as a creamy layer, he or she steps out of the definition of the BC", he accepted citing Ashoka Kumar Thakur and Indra Sawhney judgments of the Court.
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