Raj HC rejects Gujjar quota

Jaipur, Dec 9 : The Rajasthan High Court today rejected the 5% quota granted to Gujjars under the Rajasthan Specific Backward Classes Act, 2015, saying it is unconstitutional and way above the quota set by the Supreme Court.

The Act had come into effect from Oct 16, 2015, through a notification issued by the government. It is supposed to provide 5 % reservation to Gujjars, Rebari, Banjara, Gadiya Lohar communities in terms of job and educational institutions.

In Sept, 2015, the government had passed two separate bills providing for 5 % reservation to Gujjars and 14% to Economically Backward Classes of unreserved categories, sparking a furore as the quota percentage crossed the 50% cap set by the Supreme Court.

The High Court bench of Justice Manish Bhandari today rejected the Act, saying it is unconstitutional and was way above the set cap for reservation in states.

The Vasundhara Raje government in her first stint had given reservation to Gujjars in 2008 under Special category, which was rejected by the High Court in 2009.
In 2010, the High Court asked the Other Backward Class Commission to survey about the different tribes and communities. In 2012, the OBC Commission made a recommendation of providing 5 % reservation to Gujjars under the Special Backward Class.
The High Court yet again rejected it in 2013, citing the above 50% cap.
Before the SBC quota was created in 2008, the overall reservation was 49% with 12% going to the Scheduled Tribes, 16% Scheduled Castes and 21% to OBC (Other Backward Classes). The Gujjars and four other communities that now comprise the SBC were earlier part of the OBC category.

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