EWS Quota Case: SC Constitution Bench Proposes To Complete Hearing in 5 Working Days, To Start From September 13

Team SoOLEGAL 8 Sep 2022 5:24pm

EWS Quota Case: SC Constitution Bench Proposes To Complete Hearing in 5 Working Days, To Start From September 13

New Delhi: From September 13, Supreme Court Constitution bench will hear petitions challenging the constitutionality of the 10 percent quota for economically weaker sections (EWS).

The challenge to the Constitution (One Hundred and Third) Amendment Act, which introduced the 10percentage reservation for EWS, was referred to a five-judge Constitution Bench in August 2020, by a three-judge bench led by then Chief Justice of India SA Bobde.

Presently, a five-judge bench comprised of Chief Justice of India UU Lalit and Justices Dinesh Maheshwari, S Ravindra Bhat, Bela M Trivedi, and JB Pardiwala stated that the hearing will be completed within five days.

However, CJI Lalit stated that the matter will be listed again on September 8 for directions to ensure an effective and smooth hearing.

"Before we begin hearing the main matter, we will again list this matter for directions so the hearing part is conducted smoothly and effectively. List the case again for directions on September 8... What we propose is the questions that will arise will get some time extra for each party and then half a day for rejoinder and then 3 days in the first week and 2 days in the second week. So we begin the matter next Tuesday. You have to keep the sequence in mind," CJI Lalit stated.

Given the time constraints, the CJI also urged lawyers not to repeat their submissions.Also, concerning the intervention applications preferred by different states, the CJI directed that the nodal counsel, Advocates Farasat and Kanu Agarwal, take into account accommodating such states and that if any state wishes to appear, they will be given ample opportunity to do so.

The Supreme Court is hearing a batch of petitions filed by NGOs Janhit Abhiyan and Youth for Equality, among others, challenging the constitutionality of the Constitution (103rd Amendment) Act, 2019, because economic classification cannot be the sole basis for reservation.

The 103rd Constitutional Amendment Act reserves 10 percent of seats in public and private educational institutions, as well as in public employment, for "economically weaker sections" of citizens other than Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, and socially and educationally backward classes of citizens.

The petitioners claim that the amendment infringes the basic structure of the Constitution and exceeds the overall 50 percent reservation limit mandated by the Indra Sawhney case.

They have stated that the reservation of 10percentage seats for EWS other than SC/ST/OBCs is arbitrary and excessive.

They have also argued that providing reservation in educational institutions is a violation of the basic structure and that the term "class" in Article 46 of the Constitution refers to the educationally backward class, not the EWS.

Tagged: EWS Quota Case  
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