3 judges back reservation; Chief Justice UU Lalit, justice Bhat dissent with majority view
The Supreme Court on Monday upheld the validity of the 103rd Constitution amendment providing 10 per cent reservation to economically weaker sections (EWS) in admissions and government jobs.
Three out of five judges, which heard the petitions challenging the EWS reservation, upheld the EWS quota.
The judgment was pronounced by a five-judge bench headed by Chief Justice UU Lalit and also comprising justices Dinesh Maheshwari, S Ravindra Bhat, Bela M Trivedi and JB Pardiwala.
Justice Dinesh Maheshwari in the judgment said the EWS quota law did not violate the basic structure or equality code for taking into account the economic criterion.
He said the EWS reservation does not cause damage to any essential feature of the Constitution by exceeding the 50 percent ceiling for quota since the ceiling is itself flexible.
Justice Trivedi said she concurred with the judgment passed by justice Maheshwari. Trivedi said the EWS quota is valid.
Justice Pardiwala also ruled in favour of the EWS quota.
However, the Chief Justice and justice Bhat dissented with the other three judges on the bench.
Chief Justice UU Lalit and justice Bhat said the law was discriminatory and violative of the basic structure of the Construction.
The Supreme Court pronounced its judgment on a clutch of petitions challenging the validity of the 103rd Constitution amendment, cleared in January 2019, that introduced the provision of 10 percent reservation to EWS persons in admissions and government jobs.