Row over Maratha quota law heats up in State

With the Supreme Court on Tuesday listing for hearing after four weeks the Maharashtra government’s pleas seeking the lifting of the stay on the implementation of the law to provide reservation to Marathas in jobs and education, the row over the quota has intensified.

While the State government claimed the upper hand by stating that the court has granted time to hand over the matter to a Constitutional Bench, the Opposition said the government had yet again failed to deliver justice to the aggrieved community.

State Minister Ashok Chavan, who heads the Maharashtra cabinet sub-committee on Maratha reservation, said the Bench comprising Justices L. Nageswara Rao, Hemant Gupta and Ajay Rastogi accepted the State’s plea. “Today’s proceedings in the Supreme Court are being misinterpreted by the Opposition. A technical glitch delayed the start, which happens in many cases. Senior lawyer Mukul Rohatgi represented the State’s stand that since matter has been directed to a Constitutional Bench, the proceedings to lift interim stay should also be handed over to the same Bench,” he said.

The Supreme Court on September 9 ordered an interim stay on the Maratha reservation while referring the matter to a Constitutional Bench. On October 7, the State government demanded the formation of the Bench to conduct the proceedings to lift the stay. On October 10, the apex court informed the State that the matter should be taken up by a larger Bench.

Mr. Chavan said, “However, the matter was taken up by a three-member Bench. The State government had pointed it out to the registry and applied for deletion. Still it didn’t move.” He said the State government is of the view that proceedings on lifting the interim stay should be taken up by the Constitutional Bench.

Speaking to reporters in Kolhapur, State BJP president Chandrakant Patil said the Maha Vikas Aghadi government was not serious about vacating the stay on the Maratha quota. “Not only the Maratha community but the entire State is suffering because of the failure of the State government. There was no coordination between lawyers. They were not prepared. This failure has delayed the admission process in the State, leading to chaos,” said Mr. Patil.

Mr. Chavan said the Opposition is misleading the community. “BJP can always become a party to this case as over nine to 10 private individuals have come in support of the reservation. The Opposition is only interested in destabilising the government and has no intention of finding solutions.” he said.

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Printable version | Nov 24, 2020 12:01:31 AM |

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