ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Limited Imagination on Reservation

Supreme Court’s judgment to base subcategorisation on the creamy layer logic for Scheduled Castes is simplistic.

Anup Surendranath writes:

In August 2020, a five-judge constitution bench in Davinder Singh vs State of Punjab referred the constitutional permissibility of sub-classification of Scheduled Castes (SCs) to a seven-judge bench. In a judgment authored by Justice Arun Mishra, the bench opined that the Supreme Courts judgment in E V Chinnaiah (November 2004) disallowing sub-classification of SCs required reconsideration and that sub-classification was required to ensure fair distribution of reservations. Arguably, Davinder Singh adopts a constitutionally unsustainable reasoning in coming to its conclusion. By using reasoning that collapses the difference between Other Backward Classes (OBCs) and SCs, the judgment perpetuates the error in Jarnail Singhs case (September 2018) by paving the way to further entrench creamy layer for SCs in our constitutional jurisprudence. Further, in adopting a rather simplistic understanding of disparities in distribution of reservation benefits among SCs, it fails to engage with the substantive equality questions that lie at the heart of this issue. 

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Published On : 12th Jan, 2024

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