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No need for quantifiable data of SC/ST for reservation in promotion says SC

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New Delhi, Sep 26: The Supreme Court has aid that the states need not collect quantifiable data on backwardness of SC and ST employees before giving reservation in promotion to them.

The court also held that the judgment in the Nagraj case, which dealt with reservation in promotion need not be referred to a seven judge Bench. Under challenge was the 2006 Nagraj verdict which was pronounced by a 5 judge Bench.

Reservation in promotion: What is the Nagraj judgment of 2006

The court held bad in law the 2006 verdict only to the extent where it said that states need to collect quantifiable data to show backwardness.

A Constitution Bench headed by Chief Justice of India, Dipak Misra passed the orders after the Centre's push to provide accelerated promotion with consequential seniority for Schedule Castes/Schedule Tribes members in public employment.

Due to the 2006 verdict in the Nagraj case, the government was unable to introduce quota in promotion for its SC/ST employees unless they proved that the particular Dalit community is backward, inadequately represented and such reservation in promotion would not affect the overall efficiency of public administration.

Also Read | SC to examine amendment in the SC/ST Act; seeks reply from the Center in six weeks

The Nagraj verdict was pronounced by a five judge Bench. The government had sought that the matter be referred to a larger Bench for re-examination. The Centre said that the 2006 verdict had effectively created an impossible situation for providing accelerated promotions with consequential seniority for SC/ST members in government services.

Attorney General of India, K K Venugopal had said SC/ST communities have faced deprivation for centuries at the hands of society. He also said that they were denied access to several places such as schools, temples etc.

Also Read | SC Commission orders inquiry into people snatching jobs of SC/ST by fake certificates

The government said that it wanted a total of 22.5 per cent posts reserved for promotion for SC/STs in public employment. Only this would satisfy their need for adequate representation, the government further stated. While seeking a reversal of the 2006, the Centre said that each and condition laid down in the Nagraj verdict could not be complied with.

Also Read | SC refuses to pass interim order on plea on reservation to SC/ST in govt jobs

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