The Supreme Court has upheld the Constitutional validity of the Karnataka Extension of Consequential Seniority to Government Servants Promoted on the Basis of Reservation (to the Posts in the Civil Services of the State) Act 2018.
The said enactment provided for consequential seniority to persons belonging to the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes promoted under the reservation policy of the State of Karnataka.
The bench comprising Justice Uday Umesh Lalit and Justice Dhananjaya Y Chandrachud observed that this law has cured the deficiency noted in BK Pavitra judgment in respect of the 2002 law, and it does not amount to a usurpation of judicial power by the state legislature. The Reservation Act 2018 is a valid exercise of the enabling power conferred by Article 16 (4A) of the Constitution, the bench added.
- The state has studied in the present case the extent of reservation for SCs and STs in groups A to D, consisting of several cadres. Since, the group includes posts in all the cadres in that group, it can logically be presumed that the state has collected quantifiable data on the representation of SCs and STs in promotional posts in the cadres as well.
- The concept of creamy layer has no application in assessing the validity of the Reservation Act 2018 which is designed to protect consequential seniority upon promotion of persons belonging to the SCs and STs.
- Provisions in regard to retrospectivity in the Ratna Prabha Committee report are neither arbitrary nor unconstitutional.
- The data submitted by the State of Karnataka indicates that if consequential seniority is not allowed, there would be under representation of the reserved categories