Kerala High Court issues notice on PIL challenging to implement Economic Reservation

Walayar Case to be re-trialed Says Kerala HC

On Thursday, the High Court of Kerala issued notice on a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) which challenges the recent decision of Government of Kerala to implement reservation for economically weaker sections (EWS) in government jobs and seat in educational institutions.

On October 12, the Pinarayi Vijayan led government issued the orders to provide for reservation of 10% of the seats in the general category for EWS category.

Nujaim PK, a social worker and an active politician and the Secretary of Fraternity Movement Kerala State Committee filed the PIL against the Government orders.

Chief Justice S Manikumar and Justice Shaji P Chaly have issued notice to the Central and State Governments.

The petition contended that “the Constitution (103rd) Amendment which inserted Articles 15(6) and 16(6) to provide for EWS reservation was invalid as “reservation cannot be granted on the ground of economic growth”.

The petition filed through Advocates C M Mohammed Iqbal, Anjali G Krishnan, Soumya Mol N S, P Abdul Nishad and Rehana Shukkur stated, “Even though the Constitution promotes reservation on the ground of economic backwardness, it does not promote reservation on economic backwardness. Therefore, the amendment itself is bad and the consequential government orders issued by the 3rd respondent ((State of Kerala) are also bad, illegal and liable to be set aside”.

A three judged bench led by the Chief Justice of India in August referred to a larger bench the petitions challenging the constitution amendment providing for EWS reservation, Can posts be reserved only on the basis of economic criterion? Is 50% ceiling absolute? 

The petition after conducting a proper study regarding the population of the EWS in the general category, sought a directive to the State Government to re-fix the 10% quota for economically weaker sections.