The Supreme Court on Thursday refused to entertain pleas of various political parties from Tamil Nadu challenging the Centre's decision over not granting 50 per cent reservation to Other Backward Communities (OBCs) as per the state's existing reservation policy, in medical seats surrendered by the state to the all-India quota. The court's decision over these seats meant for under graduate, post graduate and dental courses was based on the argument that right to reservation is not a fundamental right.
The top court asked the political parties, Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK), All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK), CPI(M), Vaiko, Anubmani Ramadoss, Tamil Nadu Congress Committee and CPI, to approach the Madras High Court with their pleas for grant of OBC quota in medical admissions.
"The senior counsel for the petitioners seeks permission to withdraw these Writ Petitions with liberty to approach the High Court by filing Writ Petitions under Article 226 of the Constitution. Permission granted. The Writ Petitions are, accordingly, dismissed as withdrawn with the aforesaid liberty", a bench of justices L Nageswara Rao, Krishna Murari and S Ravindra Bhat said in its order.
The bench said during the hearing that a plea under Article 32 (filing of Writ petition in SC) of the Constitution can be filed only in case of violation of fundamental rights and no such rights of political parties have been violated.
Right to reservation is not a fundamental right, the court said.
The counsel for political parties said they were not seeking any addition in existing quota and were alleging that the OBC reservation policy was not being implemented.
You should withdraw this and go to the Madras High Court, the bench said, adding that the liberty was granted to the political parties to do that.
The political parties have challenged the Centre's decision not to grant 50 per cent reservation to OBCs in medical seats surrendered by Tamil Nadu in the all India quota for under graduate, post graduate and dental courses in current academic session.
DMK had said in its plea that it was opposing the denial of implementation of 50 per cent OBC policy of the state, other than in central government institutions.
It said the Medical Council of India (MCI) regulations clearly contemplate adherence to state reservation laws while filling up the seats.
The party said that the All India Quota seats are contributed by states surrendering seats in the government and private medical and dental colleges as per the MCI regulations.
DMK had sought ad-interim injunction restraining the Respondents from proceeding further with All India Counselling for PG seats pursuant to the NEET-PG 2020 results without following the 50 per cent reservation for OBC quota in Tamil Nadu pending disposal of the plea.
The party also sought direction for calling of the records of the Respondent pertaining to the Result of NEET-PG, 2020 published on May 9, 2020 by the National Board of Examinations relating to the filling up of the All India Quota and quashing of the same.
The CPI(M) plea stated that 'The Petitioner is constrained to approach this court as the Respondents (Centre, MCI and others) herein have grossly failed to provide the statutory reservations for Other Backward Classes (OBC) i.e. Backward Classes (BC) and Most Backward Classes (MBC) and anomaly in granting reservation to SC-STs students in admissions to the Undergraduate and PostGraduate medical courses in all medical colleges in Tamil Nadu in the category of state surrendered seats to the All India Quota' in Government and private medical colleges other than the Central Government institutions.'
Ruling AIADMK had alleged that there was no rational basis for not extending the benefit of 50 per cent reservation for OBCs, as envisaged under the State laws of Tamil Nadu, to the State-captured seats in the All India Quota.
The AIADMK party said that in all past academic years since the inception of the All India Quota system, OBCs have been grossly under represented in the All-India-Quota seats in undergraduate, diploma, PG diploma and postgraduate medical colleges across the country.