Unions, parties react to SC order on quota in promotion
Unions and political parties in Uttar Pradesh have reacted after the Supreme Court this week ruled that the government could proceed with reservations in promotions for employees belonging to SC and ST categories.
The court had on Tuesday allowed the Centre to go ahead with reservations in promotions for employees belonging to SC and ST categories in “accordance with law” until further consideration.
While employees’ associations are either rallying in support or against the policy, political parties have been keen to keep the pot stirring.
In a statement on Wednesday, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati hit out at the BJP government for delaying the implementation of reservation in promotion after the Supreme Court order.
She alleged the NDA government was working with a casteist mindset and said that despite invoking Dalit icon Bhimrao Ambedkar to garner the community’s votes, they were not concerned about the welfare of these people.
She observed that like the Lokpal Bill, the constitutional amendment bill for granting reservation in promotion to SC/STs was pending in the Lok Sabha for the past four years.
Rejecting the BSP chief’s allegation, a BJP leader Sameer Kumar said his party had been working for the welfare for the Dalits since the formation of its government at the Centre and in the state.
It was the Centre which drew the Supreme Court’s attention to the orders passed by high courts of various states which had brought the promotion process to a standstill, he said.
The Samajwadi Party (SP), which was earlier opposed to the move, welcomed the apex court order and sought its implementation, SP spokesperson Rajendra Chaudhary told HT.
Pro-quota employees’ association, Arakshan Bachao Sangharsh Samiti convener Awadhesh Kumar Verma on Wednesday threatened to launch a state-wide agitation if the state government failed to grant reservation in promotion to Dalit employees.
A delegation of the employees will meet chief minister Yogi Adityanath to demand implementation of the policy under section 3(7) of the Reservation Act 1994.
The opposing association, Sarvajan Hitay Sanrakshan Samiti, too, warned of a countrywide agitation against wrong interpretation of the Supreme Court order.
Its president Shailendra Dubey told HT some people were trying to create confusion over the Supreme Court order.
The issue hit headlines when the then-BSP government (2007-12) in UP granted promotion to hundreds of Scheduled Caste employees in various government departments, irrespective of their seniority.
As employees belonging to the backward and upper castes resented these promotions, political parties used the issue to galvanise voters in the 2012 assembly polls, which saw the SP beat the BSP.
A large number of employees, promoted by the BSP government, were demoted during the SP regime, more than a year after the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad high court struck down provision 8a of the consequential seniority rules as amended in 2007.
Opposing the demotion, the scheduled caste employees had launched ‘Arkshan Bachao Sangharsh Samiti’ while upper caste and backward caste employees, opposing the consequential promotion, launched Sarvajan Hitay Sanrakshan Samiti.
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