Maratha quota: Earlier panels relied on 1931 census, High Court told
Arguing for Akhil Maratha Mahasangh, advocate Vineet Naik told a bench of justices Ranjit More and Bharati Dangre that the Mandal Commission had erred in terming Marathas a forward class.Updated: Mar 20, 2019 04:33 IST
The Gaikwad Commission report supporting Maratha reservation is more accurate and reliable than the earlier reports of the Mandal Commission (1990), National Commission for Backward Classes (2000), Khatri Commission (2001) and the Bapat Commission (2008), as the latter relied on the 1931 Census data, petitioners told the Bombay high court (HC) on Tuesday.
Arguing for Akhil Maratha Mahasangh, advocate Vineet Naik told a bench of justices Ranjit More and Bharati Dangre that the Mandal Commission had erred in terming Marathas a forward class. The commission relied on the 1931 Census conducted by the British to identify classes and communities to recover taxes. The Census divided Hindus into Brahmins, intermediate Hindus (Marathas) and untouchables.
Naik said the Mandal commission termed Marathas as forward, refusing them reservation, without conducting any contemporary study. “The error committed by the Mandal commission was repeated by subsequent commissions. However, some members of the seven-member Bapat Commission had recommended that Marathas be given reservation in the educationally and socially backward section. The dissenting views were not heeded by the commission’s chairman. The government sought further data and did not accept the report,” he said.
Naik referred to the socio-economic survey of 2011 which stated that 85% of the state population was backward. “If we remove the 22% Constitutional reservation for the SC and ST, what remains is 63% of backward population which is covered by 30% reservation. In light of this and according to the Census, the forward class comprises 15% population, but enjoys 48% share, which is ludicrous,” said Naik.
First Published: Mar 20, 2019 04:33 IST