Benefits of 10% EWS Quota

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The Decisive Demand for a 10% Ews Quota Rests With Governments, Can Not Impose It, Modi Government Informs SC

The central government made the statement in an affidavit filed in response to a petition demanding the enforcement of the EWS quota in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.

The decision to enforce the 10% quota for economically weaker sections (EWS) in the Member States is a request that lies with the individual national legislatures, the Modi government told the Supreme Court.

The Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment of the Union refers to a petition asking for the enforcement of the quota in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka, where current allowances currently account for about 70% of government employment and school slots. It made the request in an affidavit to which the Print had exposure.

The Central Government's reaction implies that the limit, declared last year, does not extend to states until it is directly approved by the local authorities.

"Whether or not [to] designate the EWS of a nation for election to state government employees and for admission to state government educational institutions in compliance with the newly enacted provisions of Article 15(6) and Article 16(6) of the Constitution, the government of the State concerned shall determine," the Modi Government notes in its affidavit.

Article 15(6) and Section 16(6) of the Constitution were introduced into the Constitution by the 103rd Constitution Amendment Act 2019, in order to make provisions for the weak in the general category. As this is a federal rule on subjects (employment, education) in the concurrent list (subjects on which all states and the central government have jurisdiction), it must be approved by state governments before it is implemented locally. 

What is EWS limit?

The EWS limit refers to families with an annual income of less than Rs 8 lakh. Beneficiaries do not possess more than 5 acres of agricultural property, a residential flat with an area of 1,000 sq ft and above, and a residential plot of 100 yards and above in the notified areas and 200 yards and in non notified municipalities.

Petition Reference

The complaint in the case was submitted in August 2019 by G.S., a lawyer of the Supreme Court , mani. It seeks the intervention of the Supreme Court to enforce the 10% EWS quota in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka without disturbing the current reservation system , which includes the Scheduled Castes (SC), Scheduled Tribes (ST), the backward classes (BC) and the most backward groups (MBC).

According to the petition, Tamil Nadu reserves 69% of its work and educational seats for SCs , STs, BCs and MBCs, whereas the percentage in Karnataka is 70%.

It defines local political resistance to the quota in Tamil Nadu as driven and claims that the Supreme Court has not set a 50 per cent limit for caste-based quotas as a guideline.

"The 50 per cent vertical reserve limit for SC, ST and BC is a recommendation or debate, but not a necessary course for the central or state to follow," the plea stated, adding that all the other states had introduced the quota.

The affidavit of the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment arrived after the Supreme Court of Justices S.A. Bobde and B.R. Gavai asked the governments of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka to respond to the request. The lawsuit is due to be considered later this month. The governments of the state are yet to register their responses.

Written by - Anupam Singh

Edited by - Chhavi Gupta

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