The DMK moves to the SC for a review of the EWS decision

As a result of the Supreme Court’s recent ruling upholding the 103rd amendment to the Constitution, which added 10% reservation for economically weaker sections (EWS) among the unreserved categories in admissions and government jobs, the ruling Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) in Tamil Nadu has asked for a review.

There’s a contradiction in the majority opinion from the five-judge Constitution Bench – the court upheld the majority in a 3:1 decision.

“After going in-depth about how poverty prevents access to education and employment and the importance of alleviating it, the majority of judges haven’t provided any justification for excluding STs, SCs, and OBCs from the EWS reservation other than stating that they’ve already been given reservations under Art 15(4) and 16(4),” the petition said. As the reservations under Art 15(4) & 16(4) are based on social backwardness and historical oppression, it’s obvious this is an error.

In the party’s view, if the majority accepts that economic criteria can be separated from social criteria, social backwardness cannot be used as an excuse to exclude poor ST, SC, and OBCs because they suffer from both. The judgment, if it stands, tells a strong story about how SCs, STs, and OBCs, who have endured oppression for hundreds of years, who haven’t had jobs and education, and who haven’t been able to get a mainstream education, aren’t eligible for economic reservations.”

According to the party, the November 7 decision “directly overrules” the judgment in Indra Sawhney v Union of India (Mandal commission case), “which has authoritatively ruled that reservations cannot be based on economic criteria.”

According to the plea, the impugned judgment “legitimizes discrimination by arguing that exclusion is vital for achieving a particular goal.”

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