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HVK Archives: HC ruling on OBC quota vindicates Kalyan stance

HC ruling on OBC quota vindicates Kalyan stance - The Observer

Prajnan Bhattacharya ()
June 17, 1998

Title: HC ruling on OBC quota vindicates Kalyan stance
Author: Prajnan Bhattacharya
Publication: The Observer
Date: June 17, 1998

The Allahabad High Court judgement rejecting the writ petition
filed by the Kshatriya Mahasabha - an organisation of Rajputs,
has not only resulted in vacating the stay on the quota scheduled
for the 37 sub-castes of the 21 OBCs, but has also bailed out the
Kalyan Singh Government from an unwanted and precarious
situation. It has also snuffed out efforts by the Samajwadi
Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party to gain political mileage out
of this.

It can be noted that State Government has inducted 37 sub-castes
out of the 21 OBCs In the reservation list, and they had been
given the benefit of quota in the services and education on
6.9.95.

But the Kshatriya Mahasabha filed a writ petition against this
Government order in the Allahabad High Court, challenging the
validity of the reservation to the Kurmi-Mallya and the Kurmi-
Sainthwar sub-castes.

The Mayawati Government never took this seriously and even the
Advocate General was not asked to contest it in court. The
counter affidavit was filed by the State Government only in
March, 1996.

Meanwhile, Justice M Katju and Justice S L Saraf granted a stay
order to the Kshatriya Mahasabha and 37 sub-castes were erased
>from the hat of OBCs upon the Government decision on 11.5.98,
which sparked off a new row. The political row hit the BJP
Government in Uttar Pradesh worst, and the government was termed
anti-backward by the SP and BSP.

The Samajwadi Party and the BSP raked up the issue blaming the
State Government of inaction and warned of separate massive state-
wide agitations against the State Government. They even raised
the issue on the floor of Parliament and Mulayam Singh Yadav
warned that he and his party would take to the street.

The BSP and the SP threatened to disrupt the forthcoming Budget
session of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly starting on June 18, but
they were taken aback by the swift High Court decision, in which
the bench comprising Justice Markandey Katju and Justice G C
Mishra of Allahabad High Court rejected the writ petition on June
15, and the stay order was automatically vacated for the ruling
BJP in the State.

In fact, the State Government was surprised to see the stay order
imposed by Allahabad High Court, and Opposition parties, mainly
the Samajwadi Party and the BSP took up the issue to blame and
term the BJP as anti backward and pro-upper caste. The BJP has no
political answer despite knowing that the then Chief Minister
Mayawati never bothered to take up the writ petition seriously.

The Chief Minister, Mr Kalyan Singh, who himself belongs to a
backward community of Lodh Rajput, asked the Advocate General, Mr
R P Goel and the State Backward Class Commission to take
necessary legal action to bail out the Government from this
politically adverse situation.

The Advocate General argued that the HC did not have powers to
amend the list of Backward Classes. Thus the stay order is not
valid and legal.

He also quoted the case of Nityanand Sharma vs State of Bihar
(AIR 1996 MC 2306), Saha vs sub-divisional officer (AIR 1996 MC
1728), Indira Sahni vs Union of India (1992 Supplementary (3) SCC
217 better known as the Mandal case), Madhuri Patel vs Additional
Commissioner SC/ST Development (1994-6 SC 241) and the learned
court finally decided to reject the petition. It has saved the
Kalyan Singh Government from political embarrassment and blown
off the SP-BSP plan to corner BJP politically.

Later, the Chief Minister, Mr Kalyan Singh, blasted the
Opposition. He said that they had tried to create hatred in the
society by raking up a false issue. Finally, he said the forced-
created issues raised by the Opposition not only backfired but
also exposed their issue less politics and frustration.


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