Supreme Court upholds department-wise SC/ST quota in universities, dismisses Centre's plea against Allahabad HC order

The Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld the 2017 Allahabad High Court ruling that the quota for SC/ST faculty posts in colleges and universities should be calculated department-wise, and not institution-wise, according to media reports.

The Indian Express reported that a bench of Justice UU Lalit and Justice Indira Banerjee dismissed Centre’s special leave petition which challenged the Allahabad High Court order.

Economic Times quoted the respondent's lawyer as confirming that the Supreme Court said it was "incorrect to club departments and calculate reserved seats". The report claimed that the move may slash SC/ST category recruitment in universities by 50-60 percent.

Supreme Court upholds department-wise SC/ST quota in universities, dismisses Centres plea against Allahabad HC order

File image of the Supreme Court. AP

Expressing unhappiness over the dismissal of Centre’s plea, Minister of State Social Justice and Empowerment Ramdas Athawale said he will take up the matter with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. "We are not happy with the Supreme Court dismissing the Centre’s plea, but the government will think over it. The Department of Personnel and Training assured representation of the SC/ST/OBC, which the department-wise recruitment does not assure. Just like the SC and ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, we can approach the government for the next move," he was quoted as saying by News18.

On 7 April, 2017 Allahabad High Court had allowed a plea which challenged an advertisement brought out by Banaras Hindu University (BHU) and sought to quash the clauses which assured reservation of SCs, STs and OBCs in teaching faculty.

The court directed the university to carry out the exercise of applying reservation to the posts under advertisement treating the department as a unit for all levels of teachers, instead of treating the university as a unit.

Based on the order, the University Grants Commission (UGC) then issued a directive announcing that the number of reserved faculty posts would be calculated department wise. This prompted the Ministry of Human Resource Development to move the Supreme Court.

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Updated Date: Jan 23, 2019 13:59:08 IST

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