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Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Centre should clarify if it wants to give reservation to Marathas: Sambhajiraje

The Supreme Court Thursday dismissed the central government's review petition for reconsidering its May 5 judgment, ruling that state governments don't have the power to draw up their own lists of backward classes.

Written by Manoj Dattatrye More | Pune |
Updated: July 2, 2021 7:10:24 pm
Maratha quota, maratha silent protests, Chhatrapati Sambhajiraje, Maratha quota supreme court, uddhav thackeray maratha quota, MVA govt maharashtra, Pune news, indian expressSambhajiraje said after the SC ruling, it is clear that the Centre now has a more prominent role in deciding the reservation. (Express Photo: Arul Horizon, File)

A day after the Supreme Court dismissed the central government’s review petition for reconsidering its May 5 judgment, ruling that state governments don’t have the power to draw up their own lists of backward classes, MP Sambhajiraje Chhatrapati, who is spearheading the Maratha community’s demand for reservation, said the Centre should clarify its stand about reservation for the community in jobs and education.

“After the Supreme Court dismissed its review petition, the Centre will have to clarify its stand on Maratha reservation. The central government will have to reveal whether they want to give reservation to Maratha community,” Sambhajiraje said on Friday.

He said after the SC ruling, it is clear that the Centre now has a more prominent role in deciding the reservation issue. “The state government’s role is now limited to only making recommendations. The central government will have to take a call on reservation. We want to know whether the Centre intends to give justice to Maratha community. The Centre should set the record straight on this count,” he said.

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Sambhajiraje said the Supreme Court has rejected the 102nd constitutional amendment. “… One option is the state can set up another Backward Class Commission under Article 338 (B). It can again collect date for proving the social and education backwardness of Maratha community. The state can request that under exceptional circumstances, reservation should be given to Maratha community. This commission should overcome the lacunae of the Gaikwad Commission. The Governor can then make recommendations to the President. The President can ask the National Backward Class Commission to look into it. The commission can seek data from the State Backward Class Commission. The President can then place it before the Parliament,” he said.

Sambhajiraje said the government can come up with an ordinance so that the states can get back the power to make the SCBC Act.

He said the state government was positive about meeting the demands raised by the community. “Of the 16-17 demands, we have asked the state government to expedite five or six issues. The government has already fulfilled one of the demands, that is setting up of a sub-centre of SARTHI in Kolhapur. It has sought 21 days to meet other demands. We will wait till then,” he said.

Another Maratha community coordinator, Vinod Patil, who is also a respondent in the case in SC, said, “After the SC rejected the Centre’s review petition, the first task before the state government is to set up the Backward Class Commission and appoint members of Maratha community on it.”

Patil said a sub-committee should also be set up. “The sub committee, in a time-bound manner, should collect data available with the state and the Centre and prepare a fresh report,” he said. “This report should be placed before the cabinet and then the state legislature. The legislature should approve it and send it to the Centre. The Centre should then take the final call on reservation”.

He said, “The responsibility of the Centre and state is now equal. The state will have to make recommendation for reservation and the Centre will have to accept it. If both the Centre and state decide to, a solution can certainly be found”.

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