SC/ST reservation in promotion: SC lays down creamy layer, efficiency norms.

The court said the whole object of reservation was to see that backward classes of citizens move forward so that they may "march hand in hand with other citizens of India on an equal basis".


The Supreme Court on Wednesday said the "creamy layer test" would apply if reservatios in promotion are given to the SCs and STs. It said this was needed to prevent the creamy layer amongs SCs and STs from bagging all the coveted jobs in the public sector.

The top court also held that the authority needs to consider "efficiency of administration" while providing promotions under the law. This will be applicable at every step of promotion, said the court.

However, the court left it to Parliament to exclude the creamy layer from the Presidential Lists contained under Articles 341 and 342 of the Constitution.

"We do not think it necessary to go into whether Parliament may or may not exclude the creamy layer from the Presidential Lists contained under Articles 341 and 342," said Justice Nariman speaking for the bench.

The Supreme Court made the observations while Centre's plea to revisit its 2006 judgment on reservation in promotions to the SCs/STs on the ground that it was impossible to gather quantifiable data showing their backwardness backed by inadequacy of their representation and administrative efficiency.

The bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra said the conclusion arrived at in the Nagaraj case that the states have to collect quantifiable data showing backwardness of SCs and STs was "contrary" to the nine-judge bench judgement in the Indra Sawhney verdict of 1992, popularly known as Mandal Commission case. ( Source: The Business Standard)

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