The Karnataka government kept its promise of restoring the promotions of 6,000 SC/ST employees who were demoted based on a 2017 Supreme Court order, after being promoted as per the Karnataka Extension of Consequential Seniority Act. They will restore the promotions by creating supernumerary posts for the staff who were demoted but can’t be accommodated due to technical/legal reasons.
Commenting on the issue, Social Welfare minister Priyank Kharge said, “About 6,000 officials will benefit from this order directly, and about 35,000 officials will benefit indirectly. The cabinet passed the order, giving the go-ahead and restoring promotions to earlier cadre. At the same time, it assures officers of other communities that they will not be affected. It is a win-win situation for all. No one will be demoted.’’
The Supreme Court is yet to announce its verdict on the matter, and is hearing a review petition. However, the state government said this will not negatively impact those in the general category.
This move comes after a cabinet decision was taken to the same effect on January 30 based on the advice of former Attorney General of India Mukul Rohatgi, even though the move may have to be reversed based on the final order of the Supreme Court.
“The cabinet has decided to go ahead and implement the reservation bill with immediate effect as the legal opinion by a senior lawyer who is appearing on behalf of the government, Mukul Rohatgi, has clearly said the government has no choice but to implement the decision of the legislature which passed the act protecting the government employees promotion based on reservation,” Karnataka Minister for Rural Development and Panchayat Raj Krishna Byre Gowda had then said.
After the SC order in 2017, the Karnataka government had set up a committee headed by then Additional Chief Secretary Ratnaprabha to undertake issues concerning the reservation while promoting SC/ST employees in the light of the Supreme Court judgment and collate all the relevant data.