Gujarat High Court junks PIL seeking caste survey before decision on quota

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Ahmedabad, Sep 1: The Gujarat High Court on Tuesday dismissed a public interest litigation which had demanded that the state government must collect caste data before any decision about granting reservation to the Patel community is taken.

The division bench of acting Chief Justice Jayant Patel and Justice N V Anjaria said the petition was premature.

Gujarat High Court

"We have to presume that the government will do in accordance with the law. This petition cannot be entertained at this stage," said the court.

Mustak Qadri, the petitioner, had said that as per the previous judgements of the Supreme Court and other High Courts inclusion or exclusion in the reserved category can be done "only with the help of quantifiable data".

Such data is not available because the census reports provide caste-wise figures only till 1931, it said.

The High Court should ensure that government does not take any decision without following due procedure laid down by the Supreme Court, it said.

The PIL didn't name the Patel community, though. The agitation of the community last week for quota in OBC category had turned violent, claiming ten lives across Gujarat.

The PIL wanted the state government to initiate the process of collecting caste data through an independent backward classes commission and also take action against those responsible for damaging the public property during the violence.

PTI

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