Bihar’s 65 percent quota for backward classes struck down by High Court

The bench was hearing a batch of pleas challenging the state government's decision to give a 65 percent reservation to backward classes.
Bihar’s 65 percent quota for backward classes struck down by High Court
Jaano Junction

In a major blow to the Bihar government, the Patna High Court on Thursday scrapped its decision to hike reservations for backward classes, scheduled castes and scheduled tribes from 50 to 65 percent. After the caste-based survey report, the Nitish Kumar government had, in November last year, raised quota for the deprived classes in government jobs and educational institutions.

A division bench led by Chief Justice K Vinod Chandran struck down the amendments passed by the Bihar Assembly in 2023, saying that they are beyond the powers of the constitution and violate the equality clause under Articles 14, 15, and 16 of the Constitution.

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Bihar’s 65 percent quota for backward classes struck down by High Court

The bench was hearing a batch of pleas challenging the state government's decision to give a 65 percent reservation to backward classes.

The petition was filed by Gaurav Kumar and others.

Calling Patna High Court's decision "unfortunate," RJD leader Manoj Jha said, "I would like to say that we should see the social background of the petitioner. Who are those people trying to do this from behind the curtains? We would urge Nitish Kumar to challenge this decision immediately in the upper court," news agency PTI reported.

Earlier in November 2023, the Bihar Assembly passed the Reservation Amendment Bill. The bill was passed in the state assembly without Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s presence.

The amended reservation quota included 20 percent for Scheduled Castes, 2 percent for Scheduled Tribes, 43 percent for Other Backward Classes, and Extremely Backward Classes. Combined with the 10 percent quota for EWS, the total reservation in the state, as per the bill, was pushed up to 75 per cent, well past the 50 per cent ceiling set by the Supreme Court.

The decision limited the space for those coming from the open merit category to 25 percent. 

Source: India Today

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