Sunday, December 3, 2023

EWS verdict deeply disappointing, great threat to minority rights: Muslim League MP

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The Supreme Court order upholding reservations for the Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) is a deeply disappointing decision, said Indian Union Muslim League MP and party general secretary E.T Muhammed Basheer.

“Deeply disappointing decision by the SC to uphold the EWS quota for unreserved sections. Unfortunate, that 3 judges out of the 5 judge bench affirmed the amendment that poses a great threat to the minority rights (sic),” Basheer said in a tweet.

Basheer further claimed that his party, IUML, had opposed the EWS bill vociferously at both the state and center.

The Supreme Court Constitution Bench has by a 3:2 majority upheld the validity of the 103rd Constitutional Amendment which introduced a 10% reservation for Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) in education and government jobs.

While three judges of the five-judge bench of the Supreme Court of India uphold reservations for Economically Weaker Sections (EWS), two judges including CJI dissent on the exclusion of SCs/STs from the 10% EWS quota.

There are four judgments in the case. One judgment is by Justice Dinesh Maheshwari and the second judgment is by Justice Bela Trivedi. The third judgment has been passed by Justice JB Pardiwala and the dissenting judgment is by Justice Ravindra Bhat and CJI UU Lalit.

As per the majority view, reservation structured singularly on economic criteria does not violate the basic structure of the Constitution.

It has also held that a breach of the 50% ceiling limit by EWS reservation does not violate basic structure, Live Law reported.

“Reservation is an instrument of affirmative action by State so as to ensure all inclusive approach. It is an instrument not only for inclusion of socially and educationally backward classes…Reservations for EWS does not violate basic structure on account of 50% ceiling limit because ceiling limit because ceiling limit is not inflexible,” read the judgment by Justice Maheshwari.

In his dissenting judgment, Justice S Ravindra Bhat said that by excluding the poor among SC/ST/OBC from economically backward classes, the 103rd Amendment practices constitutionally prohibited forms of discrimination.

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