Go ahead with law on quota in promotion: Rohatgi

Go ahead with law on quota in promotion: Rohatgi

Mukul Rohatgi

Former Advocate General of India Mukul Rohatgi has given his go-ahead for the state government to implement a law that will circumvent a Supreme Court judgement striking down reservation in promotions for SC/ST employees.

This could come as a shot in the arm for the government, which has been treading cautiously as the apex court is still hearing the issue relating to reservation in promotion.

The previous Congress government enacted Karnataka Extension of Consequential Seniority to Government Servants Promoted on the Basis of Reservation (to the post in the civil services of the state) Act to go around the February 2017 SC order that struck down all consequential promotions given to SC/ST employees. Thousands of SC/ST employees stare at demotions because of the SC judgement.  

“It is clear that implementation of the Act will not amount to contempt of the Supreme Court even though the matter is currently sub-judice. There is no stay by the Court upon the operation of the Act. There is no question of contempt whatsoever,” Rohatgi has

The senior advocate also pointed out that “it is the bounden duty of the State government to implement the will of the Legislative Assembly and to ensure the Act is implemented.” The government, Rohatgi added, has “no choice in this behalf. The validity of the Act would be decided by the Court but that is no reason not to

While SC/ST employees are mounting pressure on the government to implement the Act, another section of government employees that calls itself Ahimsa (a Kannada acronym for minorities, backward class and general merit) has threatened to move court on January 15, when the matter is slated for hearing, if the government goes ahead.

The Ahimsa members staged a protest at Freedom Park on Friday before submitting a petition to Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy. “We feel the opinion given by Mukul Rohatgi is biased and is given because of political pressure,” Ahimsa stated.

Deputy Chief Minister G Parameshwara and Social Welfare Minister Priyank Kharge, both Dalits, are pushing for implementation of the Act.

“The matter has come up for discussion several times during Cabinet meetings. The government is bound to protect all sections of society. We will take an appropriate decision to settle this issue amicably,” Kumaraswamy told reporters.