- Government’s dilemma over Supreme Court ruling on concept of creamy layer for SC/STs.
- In the present judgment, the Supreme Court has decided not to collect data of backwardness to provide reservation to SC/STs but it may consider the concept of creamy layer for SC/ST.
- Supreme Court has said the concept of creamy layer to be applicable for SC/STs, which, so far, was applicable to OBC only (Families with income above Rs. 8 lakhs/ annum are not eligible for reservation).
- It has been argued concept of creamy layer for SC/STs will defeat the very purpose of reservation because:
- Since the SC/STs are already considered backward, further dividing them on the basis of economic backwardness to avail reservation may not sound appropriate.
- This verdict is in contrast to the judgment in the Ashok Thakur case in 2008 when judges while providing the reservation to SC/ST did not considered the concept the Creamy Layer..
- Economically prosperous SCs will continue to face discrimination in employment.
- Decision may also encourage the demand to implement the creamy layer criteria in the overall recruitment of SC/STs (from selection to promotion).
- Nowhere in the world the reservation provided for equal access to job/education is based on the economic criteria.
- Many sectors are being privatized and there is no reservation in private sector.
- Supreme Court stand on its Judgement:
- To ensure there is no discrimination against the poor/backward category within the same class.
- Will enable the backward classes of citizen to move forward with other citizen of India on an equal basis.
- SC judgement is within the principal of equality under article 14 and 16 when excluding the creamy layer.
- Parliament will have complete freedom to include or exclude persons from the Presidential Lists based on relevant factors under Article 341 and 342 of the constitution.