NEW DELHI :
The Supreme Court on Monday asked Madras High Court to decide on merits, a batch of petitions seeking 50 per cent reservation for OBC students in seats shared by the State in the All India Quota (AIQ) of medical colleges in Tamil Nadu.
A bench headed by Justice L Nageswara Rao said the Saloni Kumari case pending with it regarding the grant of 27 per cent OBC quota in terms of a Central Act cannot act as an impediment for Madras High Court in deciding on the grant of 50 per cent quota for OBC in Tamil Nadu on the basis of state law.
The bench asked the High Court to decide the matter on merits while clarifying that Saloni Kumari pendency will have no bearing on specific cases pending before it.
The top court was hearing a batch of plea including of Tamil Nadu government against non-implementation of 50 per cent reservation for students belonging to the OBC category in admission to seats surrendered by the state to the AIQ in medical and dental courses.
The Tamil Nadu government had approached the top court against a June 22 order of the Madras High Court keeping in abeyance its plea for the implementation of 50 per cent reservation for OBC students in the admission.
The state government, in its plea, said that the process of allocating seats is currently ongoing after the second round of the counselling took place and urged that there is a need to provide provisional reservation for the concerned academic year urgently.
“The allocation of medical seats for the academic year 2020-2021 is already underway and on June 16, 2020, the results for the second round of the counselling were announced. The candidates are in the process of reporting to the allotted Institute/College,” the plea said.
It asserted that if the writ petition is not allowed it would deny hundreds of seats to deserving OBC candidates, thereby further reinforcing their social and educational disadvantage, and further perpetrating mass inequality in the State of Tamil Nadu.
Earlier in June, the Tamil Nadu government had approached the apex court with the same grievance but the top court asked it to approach the Madras High Court instead.
Based on the representations made by the Union Health Ministry, Human Resource Development Ministry, and the Director-General of Health Services, the High Court had adjourned the matter till July 9.
The Tamil Nadu government aggrieved by the High Court’s lack of appreciation regarding the urgency of the issue had again approached the apex court.
“…the High Court has erroneously acceded to representations made by the respondents and unjustifiably kept in the Petitioner’s writ petition in abeyance till this Court issues orders in an ostensibly identical matter..,” state government plea in the apex court said.
This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.