The Supreme Court on Friday sought the Centre’s reply on a PIL challenging provisions of the National Commission for Minority Education Institution Act, 2004.
The plea by Advocate Ashwani Upadhyay has argued that the Act identifies minorities at the national level and not at the state level, thereby depriving deserving minorities in the states of their Constitutional rights.
A bench of Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul, Ajay Rastogi and Aniruddha Bose issued notices to Ministries of Home Affairs, Law and Justice and Minority Affairs, seeking their replies in six weeks.
The petition contended that under Section 2(f) of the Act, the Centre notified Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists and Parsis as minorities at the national level. This, he pointed out, was against the spirit of the Supreme Court judgment in the TMA Pai case.
The plea argued that those who follow Hinduism, Judaism and Bahaism and are minorities in regions like Ladakh, Mizoram, Lakshadweep, Kashmir, Nagaland, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh, Punjab and Manipur, cannot establish and administer educational institutions of their choice.