Updated: June 5, 2021 2:15:10 pm
Despite Congress’ opposition to the scrapping of 33 per cent quota in government job promotion, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray-led general administration department has issued orders giving temporary promotions to 69 officers this week based on seniority.
The move is likely to widen the differences within the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government on the issue.
The promotions were announced on the basis of a May 7 order, which scrapped reservation in promotion for Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and a few other categories. The May 7 order came days after the Supreme Court quashed Maratha quota and is seen as a move to pacify the politically-powerful community.
While 67 promotions were announced on Monday, two were announced on Wednesday.
As per the GAD orders, the government has given seniority-based promotion on a “temporary basis” to 69 desk officers to the post of under secretary, including 33 from the open category and 36 from Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, denotified tribes, nomadic tribes B, C and D and Other Backward Classes.
Officials said that these promotions have been given subject to the outcome of the petition pending in the Supreme Court on quota in promotion. “These promotions have been given as an administrative requirement in larger public interest. But the officers who have been promoted based on seniority will not be eligible for rights enjoyed by officers who have been promoted as per the regular process,” said an official.
Another official said that if quota in promotion is restored, the government would fix seniority of officers and demote junior personnel accordingly if required.
Days after the Supreme Court quashed the Maratha quota in the first week of May, the state had on May 7 scrapped 33 per cent reservation in promotion for Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, Vimukti Jati and Nomadic Tribes and Special Backward Classes categories that was introduced on April 25, 2004.
Soon after, Congress Minister Nitin Raut had opposed the move and demanded a stay on the May 7 order. State Congress president Nana Patole had also termed the decision unconstitutional.
Raut, who had been hopeful of a resolution earlier this week, has lashed out saying that “nobody should forget” that Congress was an alliance partner in the MVA government. “Issuing orders for promotion on seniority despite our objection is an insult of Congress. We will continue to fight for the protection of the rights of backward classes,” he added.
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