New delhi, March 17: The Supreme Court on Tuesday quashed the Union government's decision to include Jats in other backward class (OBC) category. The Apex court has given this decision on a batch of petitions challenging the validity of the reservation.
The petitioners had contended that as Jats were politically and socially advanced, so they didn't qualify to avail reservations. They had argued that the UPA's decision to extend reservation to Jats was politically and electorally motivated.
An apex court bench of Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice Rohinton Fali Nariman said: "We can't agree that politically organised Jats are backward class so as to be entitled to OBC reservation."
"Inclusion of politically organised class such as Jats... can't be affirmed", said Justice Gogoi pronouncing the judgment.
The UPA government had announced reservation for Jats on the eve of general elections held in May 2014.
Ironically, the Narendra Modi government too backed the UPA decision to extend OBC reservation to Jats saying that it was not inspired by electoral considerations but a bonafide decision in public interest.
"As regards the averments that the central government with a motive to gain benefit for the ruling political parties in the forthcoming general election issued the said notification, this fact is denied as unfounded," the central government had said in its affidavit filed in the apex court August 11, 2014.
"It is a submitted that the central government has acted bonafide and in public interest," it had said.
Seeking the dismissal of the petition by OBC Reservation Raksha Samiti and others challenging the extension of OBC reservation to Jats in nine states, the affidavit had said: "In the present case, the advice tendered by the National Commission for Backward Classes was rejected by the cabinet for the reason that the commission has not adequately taken into account the ground realities."
(With inputs from agencies)