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M.R. BALAJI V. STATE OF MYSORE 1962

FACTS OF THE CASE 

 In this case The State issued an order on 26th July 1958, that all the communities excepting the Brahmin community, 75% seats are reserved including schedule caste and schedule tribes for them as these are educationally and socially backward. They passed another order after that on 31st July , 1962 which is for engineering and medical Colleges on the basis of religion, race and caste in which 68% seats are reserved and 32% unreserved seats. They classified the backward classes into two categories backward classes and more backward classes . Later this order was challenged under article 32 through a writ petition before the supreme court saying it is fraud on Article 15(4) . They claim that the classification made by the state of 68% reservation was irrational and fraud as it is infringing their Fundamental Rights. So the reservation for socially and backward classes for Schedule caste and schedule tribes and 32% seats are left for the merit pool. There are 23 Petitioners before the supreme court out of which 6 petitioners were applicants for admission in Medical Colleges. So the order was challenged by a more marks secured candidates as they failed to get admission because of the government reservation order. 

ISSUES

  • Can State create two categories of backward classes into ” backward classes” and more backward
  • Whether 68% of reservation in educational institutions is reasonable and possible
  • Does State has constitutional powers under Article 15 (4) to pass such reservation orders

ARGUMENTS 

The writ petitions filed to challenge the validity of the order as petitioners claimed that the classification made by this order is irrational and 68% of reservation is fraud under Article 15 (4) On 29-1-1953. The writ petitions filed to challenge the validity of the order succeeded and the impugned order was quashed. The petitioners grievance and urge that the impugned order which has denied them the facility of admission in the respective colleges is void under Article 15 (1) and 29(2) and they pray that a writ of direction should be issued against Respondent 1 the State of Mysore and the two selection committees which have been impleaded as Respondent 2 and 3. It is also urged by them that the extent of reservation stated by the said order is unreasonable and is not justified by Article 15 (4) which are denied by the State as they stated that the order is a colourable exercise of the State’s power and amounts to a fraud on the constitution is disputed. 

JUDGEMENT

In this case the judgement of the court was delivered by Gajendra Gadkar, J and court rejected the contention of the petitioners as the President can only pass an order under Article 15(4) of the constitution and court laid down some important criteria of reservation, that the reservation should be given on the basis of only socially and educationally backward classes allowed and not only on the basis of caste as the state categories the backward classes on the basis of caste which is not permitted by article 15(4) and court capped the reservation cannot cross 50% , reservation of 68% is inconsistent and reserving 68% of the seats in technical institutions like engineering and medical colleges would be a fraud upon the constitution as the reservation should be given in order to advance the weaker section of the society but while doing so, care should be taken not to exclude admission the higher educational centres of deserving and qualified candidates of other communities,  as the higher educational institutions and the national interest would suffer if the qualified students are denied admissions in higher educational institutions. Thus the reservation order is a fraud on the constitutional power conferred on the state by article 15(4) and reservation is intended for the advancement and the upliftment of the weaker sections of the society. In the result, The court allowed the writ petitions and stated that an appropriate writ should be issued for restraining the three respondents from giving effect to the impugned order. 

Conclusion

In this Case The supreme court mentioned the important criteria of reservation that the reservation should be provided to the weaker sections of the society in order to advance and uplift the weaker sections and not be done by cutting the interest of the remaining sections of the society. Under Article 15(4) backwardness must be both social and educational and not either social or educational and categorisation of backward classes into backward and more backward is not warranted by Article 15(4) and was a fraud on Article 15(4) of the constitution. The reservation of 68% is inconsistent with the provisions of Article 15(4) . Therefore the Supreme Court limits the reservation to 50% and reservation must not exceed 50% in any case and threw light on the importance of national interest above all to not affect the qualified students to not take admissions in the institutions of higher and technical education for the sake of reservation. So the sole basis for determining whether a caste is backward or not will only be on the basis of socially and educationally backward classes and not on the basis of caste. 

Reference

https://indiankanoon.org/doc/599701/

written by Ritika Sharma intern under legal vidhiya.


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