The Union government has said before the five-judge Constitution Bench headed by Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan that the constitution of India allowed the government to take such steps for the upliftment of the backward classes.
At the same time, senior advocate K Parasaran also said to the bench that the concept of the exclusion of the ‘creamy layer’ from the sphere of the quota could not be applied in the case of the reservation granted to the people of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in the country.
Earlier, Parasaran had told the bench that the 93rd Constitutional Amendment included with Article 15(5) enables the reservation for socially and educationally backward classes (SEBCs) as constitutional. The policy for granting quota to OBCs is not violative of the basic structure of the Constitution.
While continuing with the arguments to defend the 27 per cent quota for OBCs in the Central Educational Institutions, he said that the constitution has defined the SCs and STs and it cannot be altered by bringing the concept of creamy layer in the definitions. The concept of creamy layer is not relevant for extending the quota for the SCs and STs.
At the same time, he said that the 27% quota for OBCs was actually a well-timed legislation and it will take time to eradicate illiteracy among the people of backward classes.
When the bench asked about the existence of the norm that helped Parliament to place the law in place, Parasaran said that the government has planned to take a periodic review of the Socially and Educationally Backward Classes (SEBCs). He also said that because of the complexity in the modern society, the institution such as Parliament is the best to tackle the situation.
Earlier, the Constitution bench had asked that the provision of granting the reservation to the SCs and STs was for the period of 10 years and the governments have extended the reservations over the period. The bench said that if in the given case it was a blanket provision then the provision for the quota would have to go.