States Can't be Compelled to Give Jobs, Admissions Under EWS Quota Law: Centre in SC
File photo of a job fair. (Representative image: PTI)
New Delhi: The central government has submitted in the Supreme Court that it cannot compel states to give reservation benefits to economically weaker sections (EWS) in jobs and education there.
In its affidavit, the Centre maintained that it is completely up to the state governments to dole out quota benefits for EWS in terms of the recent constitutional amendments.
The stand of the central government is significant, for it makes it clear that despite the amendments in favour of the EWS, it will be for the states to take a call whether they want to extend benefits of public employments and admissions in state-run educational institutions to the economically deprived classes or not.
The Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment was responding to a PIL that sought quota benefits for EWS in states of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.
Supreme Court lawyer GS Mani had complained that these two states did not show any action in implementing the 103rd Constitutional Amendment Act, 2019, providing 10 per cent reservation for EWS.
Replying to Mani's petition, the ministry stated that the amendments for EWS were brought in with the objective of promoting the welfare of poor persons not covered under the existing scheme of reservation for the Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Socially and Educationally Backward Classes.
But it added: "Whether or not to provide reservation to the EWS of the society for appointment in state government jobs and for admission to state government educational institutions, as per provisions of the newly inserted Articles 15(6) and 16(6), is to be decided by the concerned state government."
Steering clear of the controversy, the Centre said that the department of Social Justice and Empowerment had no role on deciding the reservation policy of any state government.
The affidavit clarified that the Centre has no role to play for in jobs under the state governments and educational institutions being run by them.