Uddhav-led MVA govt, ex-CM Fadnavis trade words over SC verdict on Maratha quota
- The apex court on Wednesday quashed the 2018 law which was brought by the Maharashtra government in 2018 to give reservation to the Maratha community citing that the state could not have breached the 50% ceiling on quota.
Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray on Wednesday said that the legal battle on Maratha reservation will continue and termed the verdict given by the Supreme Court as “unfortunate”. Thackeray also requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to take a decision on Maratha reservation since the authority to decide on the Maratha quota reservation lies with the Centre.
The apex court on Wednesday quashed the 2018 law which was brought by the Maharashtra government in 2018 to give reservation to the Maratha community citing that the state could not have breached the 50% ceiling on quota.
Maharashtra minister Ashok Chavan, who heads the state cabinet's committee on Maratha reservation, said that the MVA government will send a recommendation to the Centre for Maratha reservation since the apex court upheld the validity of the 102nd constitutional amendment and ruled that the central government is the only authority which has the power to determine socially and educationally backward classes (SEBCs).
“The Fadnavis-led government enacted the Reservation Act in November 2018 after 102th constitutional amendment which took away the state's power to give reservation,” Chavan said. He also accused the former chief minister of misleading the people of Maharashtra by passing a law when it had no power to do so.
“The responsibility of giving reservation to the Maratha community now lies with the Centre after the Supreme Court order which makes it clear that states do not have right to give quotas to any community,” NCP minister Nawab Malik said.
Former chief minister Devendra Fadnavis blamed the Shiv Sena and said that every single decision was taken after keeping Uddhav Thackeray into confidence since he was part of the previous government. He also highlighted that the Solicitor General had highlighted that the state's power to award reservation has not been taken away. “The law on Maratha quota was passed by our government by taking Uddhav Thackeray into confidence as his party was part of our government at that time,” Fadnavis said.
“The Solicitor General had clearly told the Supreme Court that states' right to provide quota had not been taken away,” he further added.
The five-judge bench, headed by justice Ashok Bhushan said that the decision to provide quota to the Maratha community beyond 50% violated equality and also said that the state failed to show any particular reason as to why the Maratha community should be considered as socially and economically backward class.