Reservation Current Affairs - 2019

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Maratha quota valid but should be reduced: Bombay HC

Bombay High Court (HC) upheld the reservation for Maratha community in government jobs and education constitutional valid but suggested to reduce the quota percentage from present 16% to 12-13%.

Key Highlights of Judgment

The reduced quota limit suggested by Bombay HC is as recommended by State Backward Classes Commission.

Legislative Competence: As per HC, state government possesses legislative competence to create a separate category of Socially and Educationally Backward Class (SEBC) and grant reservation.

The court was hearing petitions challenging Maharashtra government’s decision granting 16 per cent reservation to the Maratha community in government jobs and educational institutions.

Background

On 30 November 2018, following the state wide agitations by Maratha Community, the Maharashtra legislature passed a bill granting 16% reservation in education and government jobs for Marathas.  Maratha Community was also declared a socially and educationally backward class by government.

The government defended its decision by stating that quota was meant to alleviate Maratha community, which was socially and economically backward.

Petition:

HC gave the judgment upon hearing a bunch of petitions which challenged Maharashtra government’s quota decision of granting 16% reservation to Marathas.

The petitions argued that reservation provided violates the Supreme Court’s orders which states that reservation in any state should not exceed more than 50% per cent.

However, reservation to Marathas will be in addition to the existing 52% overall reservation in state and with additional 16% reservation, reservation quantum in state was expected to rise to 68%.

Punjab Assembly passed resolution to seek 33% reservation for women in Parliament

Punjab Legislative Assembly unanimously passed a resolution for seeking 30% reservation for women in Parliament and State legislative assembly. The resolution was moved by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, urging the Centre to enact it. The bill would ensure the representation of men and women equally in national electoral process.

Key facts

The women Reservation Bill will ensure the balanced representation of women in electoral and decision-making process. The bill would reserve 180 seats out of 543 seats in Lok Sabha and 1370 seats out of 4109 seats in State Assembly.

Apart from that, State will give more parole holidays for prisoners extending from 12 weeks to 16 weeks during 550th birth anniversary celebration of Guru Nanak Dev.

Other Resolutions passed

  • The state assembly passed other amendments in Punjab Goods and Service Tax Bill, The Punjab Panchayat Raj Bill, The Punjab Good Conduct Prisoners Bill, The Punjab Regulation of Cattle Feed, Concentration and Mineral Mixtures Bill.
  • The Punjab Goods and Service tax Bill will enable small taxpayer to quarterly file returns and tax payment.
  • The Cattle feed Bill will provide framework for proper regulation of animal husbandry sector.
  • The State Assemble unanimously passed another resolution for swapping of land with Pakistan to make it Kartarpur.