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SC delivers 3:2 split verdict on EWS quota: Here's what the judges said

SC delivers 3:2 split verdict on EWS quota: Here's what the judges said

SC delivers 3:2 split verdict on EWS quota: Here's what the judges said
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By CNBCTV18.com Nov 7, 2022 4:44:42 PM IST (Published)

The top court heard as many as 40 petitions and most of the pleas, including the lead one filed by 'Janhit Abhiyan' in 2019, challenged the validity of the Constitution Amendment (103rd) Act 2019.

In a split verdict of 3:2, the Supreme Court upheld the validity of the 103rd Constitution amendment providing 10 percent reservation to people belonging to the economically weaker sections (EWS) in admissions and government jobs.

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A five-judge Bench headed by Chief Justice UU Lalit pronounced four separate verdicts on 40 petitions challenging the validity of the 103rd Constitution amendment.
Justices Dinesh Maheshwari, Bela M Trivedi and JB Pardiwala upheld the law. Justice S Ravindra Bhat and the CJI had a dissenting view.
Here's what the judges said:
Justice Maheshwari: The 103rd constitutional amendment cannot said to breach the basic structure of the Constitution.
He said reservation is an instrument of affirmative action so as to ensure an all inclusive march towards goals of an egalitarian society and it is a means of the inclusion of any class or section so disadvantaged.
Justice Trivedi: The 103rd constitutional amendment cannot be struck down on grounds of being discriminatory.
She said the 103rd Constitution amendment has to be treated as affirmative action by Parliament for the benefit of EWS class.
Justice JB Pardiwala concurred with their views and upheld the validity of the amendment.
Justice Pardiwala added that reservation is meant to secure social justice but it should not continue for indefinite time so that it becomes vested interest.
Justice S Ravindra Bhat dissented and struck down the constitutional amendment on EWS quota.
He declared the 103rd Amendment Act as unconstitutional and void on grounds that it is violative of basic structure of the Constitution.
CJI Lalit concurred with the view of Justice Bhat. The CJI held that 10 percent quota for EWS is violative of Constitution. "I have concurred with the view taken by Justice Bhat. The decision stands at 3:2," said the CJI.
The top court heard as many as 40 petitions and most of the pleas, including the lead one filed by 'Janhit Abhiyan' in 2019, challenged the validity of the Constitution Amendment (103rd) Act 2019.
The Centre, through the 103rd Constitutional Amendment Act, 2019, introduced the provision for EWS reservation in admissions and public services.
The Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha cleared the bill on January 8 and 9 in 2019 respectively and it was then signed by then President Ram Nath Kovind. The EWS quota is over and above the existing 50 percent reservation to SCs, STs, and Other Backward Classes (OBCs).
With inputs from PTI
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