Published On: Sat, Nov 16th, 2019

Amend Constitution for OBC quota in promotions: PMK to Centre

Chennai: The Pattali Makkal Katchi on Saturday urged the Centre to come forward to amend the Constitution to ensure promotions for Other Backward Classes in government service.

“The basis of social justice is about giving reservations not only in appointments but also in promotions,” PMK founder-leader S Ramadoss said.

A day after the Madras High Court declared ultra vires and unconstitutional the Tamil Nadu government fixing seniority and conferring promotions for its employees based on reservation, the PMK wanted the state government and those committed to social justice to exert pressure on the Centre on the matter.

Citing the judgment, PMK founder-leader S Ramadoss said when viewed legally and on the touchstone of Supreme Court guidelines the High Court verdict can neither be faulted nor criticised.

At the same time, when looked through the prism of social justice, denying backward class people, their rights on unreasonable grounds is not acceptable, he said in a statement.

“The basis of social justice is about giving reservations not only in appointments but also in promotions; how it can be social justice if backward and most backward classes retired from the same posts to which they were appointed.”

“When promotions for the Scheduled Castes and Tribes faced a threat in Central services, the government adopted the Constitution (117th Amendment) Bill, 2012 and ensured reservation in promotions for them, he said adding by making a similar amendment, promotions for the OBCs can be ensured.”

“Hence, the Central government should come forward to adopt a Constitutional amendment (Bill) and Tamil Nadu government and those concerned about social justice should exert pressure on the Union government,” the PMK top leader said.

On Friday, the High Court had held the State government’s adoption of roster point system in fixing seniority of government servants was nothing but an indirect way of providing reservation even beyond 69 per cent.

Section 40 of the Tamil Nadu Government Servants (Conditions of Service) Act, 2016 that governs seniority in service as per the rule of reservation and the order of rotation and section 70 that validated it notwithstanding any judgment were declared unconstitutional.

Also, a provision which gave a retrospective effect to the seniority aspect covered under section 40 was also declared unconstitutional.

A Division bench of Justices MM Sundresh and RMT Teekaa Raman, pointing to the State government taking umbrage under Article 16(4) of the Constitution that facilitates reservations, had held that the government cannot take refuge under this provision if there is no constitutional amendment to allow it.

PTI

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