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Plea challenging quota to Muslims admitted in HC

Plea challenging quota to Muslims admitted in HC

Author: Omer Farooq
Publication: The Pioneer
Date: June 30, 2005

A writ petition challenging the legality of five per cent reservations to the Muslim community has been admitted by the Andhra Pradesh High Court raising fresh doubts about the implementation of the quota system immediately. The writ petition filed by two students, Ms Rachna Reddy and Ms Neeta Reddy, will be heard by a division bench of the court on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, two caveats have been filed in the High Court to forestall any legal challenge to reservation for Muslims. One was filed by Member of Parliament of Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) Asaduddin Owaisi and the other by Muslim Struggle Committee of Mahbubnagar district. By filing these caveats the petitioners will be able to become a party to any case filed against the reservation.

In their petitions, the two students contended that the ordinance giving five per cent reservation to the Muslim community is politically motivated. They said they had passed the entrance test with good marks for admission in professional courses but now their future is uncertain because of reservation.
The petitioners also alleged that the Government had brought pressure on the backward classes commission to submit its report early so it could provide reservation to Muslims beginning this academic year itself.
The petitioner contended that inclusion of Muslims in the backward classes list was not in accordance with the directive of the Supreme Court as it could be done only after a scientific study to ascertain the ratio of a community in the total population and its economic status.
The pro-reservation petitioners have pointed out that the backward class commission was set up by the Government on the directions of the Andhra Pradesh High Court and the commission submitted its report only after collecting and analysing the data through scientific methods.
This is the second time a Government order providing reservation to Muslims has been challenged in the State High Court. A similar order last year was passed by a five-judge full bench of the High Court as the Government had taken the decision on its own without the recommendation of any commission. The court had directed the Government to set up a backward class commission which should submit its report within six months of its constitution.

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