Bombay High Court puts Maratha quota data onus on Maharashtra government

Mumbai: Bombay High Court on Thursday put the onus on the Maharashtra government on whether it desires to refer the data to Backward Class Commission. The government had collected voluminous data to substantiate its claim that the Maratha Community is backward and “deprived.”

A Division Bench presided over by Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice Girish Kulkarni was hearing a bunch of petitions challenging the government’s decision to grant 16% reservation to the Maratha Community in government jobs and educational institutions.

The Bench was earlier informed that the government has constituted a Backward Class Commission under the chairmanship of former HC judge, Justice SB Mhase. The government had then opined that the data, it collected, can be sent to the Commission for scrutinisation.

On Thursday, government pleader Abhinandan Vagyani submitted an affidavit seeking the court’s permission to refer the data to the Commission.

Refusing to grant any permission, Chief Justice Chellur said, “We are of the opinion that there should not be any permission of the court and, apparently, there is no impediment on the government to place the data before any Commission. We are not inclined to accept the prayer seeking court’s permission to refer the data to the Commission.”

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