A day after the Madhya Pradesh High Court set aside reservations for scheduled caste and scheduled tribe employees and officers in promotions, groups representing interests of SC/ST employees on Sunday held a meeting to chalk out a strategy for opposing the court’s order.
The employee groups appeared to be sharply divided over the issue, with a few opposing the order while others supporting it.
On Saturday, a division bench of Chief Justice AN Khanwilkar and Justice Sanjay Yadav in response to a bunch of petitions by RB Rai, Santosh Kumar, SC Pandey and others, struck down the Madhya Pradesh Public Service Promotion Rules, 2002– that reserves 16% of posts for scheduled castes and 20% for scheduled tribes in elevation–saying that they violated Supreme Court guidelines.
Anusuchit Jati Janjati Adhikari Evam Karmchari Sangh (AJJAKS) at a meeting held on Sunday, has decided to approach the Supreme Court challenging the high court’s judgment.
“We have sought time from the CM to meet him and discuss the issue,” AJJAKS general secretary SL Suryawanshi said.
“Our main demands from the state government are that the appeal in the Supreme Court against the order should be argued by Mukul Rohatgi or Harish Salve as we feel the matter was not argued well by the state government at the Jabalpur high court,” he said.
“The state government should issue an order stating that promotions that were effected under the state public service promotion rules, not be reversed until the final pendency of the petition in the Supreme Court.”
Employee organisations have made varying claims about those affected by the order. While the AJJAKS said there are a total of 8 lakh employees and officials of which 2.5 lakh hail from the scheduled castes and scheduled tribe category working for the state government and semi government institutions registered with the association, the MP Class III Employees Sangh claims that there are about 5.8 lakh employees out of which 1.10 lakh are from the category.
“ We welcome the HC order on quashing reservation in promotion. We will file a caveat in the Supreme Court demanding that our arguments too are heard,” said Arun Dwivedi, general secretary of the Class III employees sangh, one of the bodies that are against reservation in promotion.
“We are with the AJJAKS on the issue of promotions on reservation,” said Bhuvnesh Patel, president of the Anya Pichda Varg, Jaati, Janjaati Alpsankhyak Adhikari Karmchari Sangh.
Chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Saturday said that the state government was in favour of reservation in promotions and will appeal against the order in the Supreme Court.