SC to hear Centre's petition on OBC quota on May 16

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New Delhi, May 15: The Supreme Court will hear tomorrow the petition filed by the Union government against Calcutta High Court order staying the operation of the Union government notification for implementation of 27 per cent OBC quota in IIMs and post graduation courses.

A bench headed by Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan fixed the date of hearing after the matter was mentioned before the court by Solicitor General G E Vahanvati for urgent hearing. Mr Vahanvati pleaded before the court that in view of the beginning of the new academic session namely 2008-2009 the matter required urgent hearing by this court.

According to the Central government the impugned High Court order goes against the judgement of the five judge constitution bench of this court which had upheld the constitutional validity of the government notification providing 27 per cent reservation for OBCs in admission to Centrally run educational institutions of higher learning such as IIMs, IITs and post graduate medical courses etc.

The apex court in its judgement dated April 10 this year had upheld the validity of the government notification with a rider that creamy layer among OBCs would be excluded from the benefit of the reservation policy of the government.

The notification was, however, not applicable in case of minority educational institutions and the question was left open so far as private, unaided educational institutions are concerned. It was also clarified by the apex court that direction of the exclusion of creamy layer shall not apply in case of SCs, STs who are entitled to 22.5 per cent reservation.

The Central government is also seeking ad interim ex parte stay against the High Court order on the grounds that if the order of the High Court is not stayed then the entire admission process shall be in turmoil and the government policy of OBC quota cannot be applied unless and until the High Court order remains suspended till the final disposal of the appeal of the government.

UNI

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