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HC quashes classification of Scheduled Castes

Written by: Staff

Chandigarh, July 7 (UNI) In a significant judgement, the Punjab and Haryana High Court has quashed a 12-year-old decision of the Haryana government whereby it had classified the list of scheduled castes into two separate categories for recruitment and other benefits.

The court's division bench of the acting Chief Justice Harjit Singh Bedi and Justice Ranjit Singh Randhawa allowed the writ petitions of Kurukashetra-based Guru Ravi Dass Mandir and Dharamsala, Gaje Singh Muwal of Narwana (Jind) and others seeking directions to quash the Haryana government notification and instructions of November 9, 1994 whereby the list of scheduled castes had been classified into SC(a) and Sc(b) and was granting benefits on the basis of these lists.

It contained only one category of scheduled castes in one list and the remaining thirty six were in the other lists but the benefit of reservation adversely affected the second category who shared 50 per cent of the available reservation, unlike those in the first category who had the fifty per cent reservation to themselves.

It was argued that the list of scheduled castes was issued by the Union government which alone was competent to make changes, alterations or classification and as such, the Haryana government's action was illegal and arbitrary.

The counsel for the petitioner pointed out that similar classification of scheduled castes implemented by the Andhra Pradesh government had been struck down by the High Court at Hyderabad and the appeal against the same too was dismissed by the apex court in the case of E.V. Chinniah versus state of Andhra Pradesh.

In the light of the Supreme Court's decision in the matter, the High Court allowed the writ petitions and yesterday quashed the notification, instructions issued by the Haryana government on November 9, 1994.


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