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Supreme Court Allows OBC Quota in Uttar Pradesh Urban Local Body Elections

The UP government had approached the SC after the Allahabad High Court had quashed its order in December 2022.

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Supreme Court, on Monday, 27 March, gave a green signal to conducting urban local body elections in Uttar Pradesh with Other Backward Classes quota. The apex court has allowed the State Election Commission to issue a notification in this regard.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath welcomed the decision. He wrote in a tweet, "Accepting the report of the OBC Commission, the Honorable Supreme Court's order to conduct urban body elections with OBC reservation is welcome. Following the rules of reservation in a lawful manner, the Government of Uttar Pradesh is committed to conduct urban body elections in a time-bound manner."

The UP government had approached the Supreme Court after the Allahabad High Court had quashed its order in December 2022 stipulating quotas for the OBCs in the local body elections. The court's objection was that the government had not fulfilled the 'Triple Test' and therefore the OBCs could not be given reservations. It had directed that the OBC seats should be converted to general seats and elections should be held "immediately."

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The Supreme Court stayed this order in January and granted time till 31 March to the UP government to submit a report on the political backwardness of the OBCs prepared by the Backward Classes Commission.

A bench of Chief Justice DY Chandrachud and Justices PS Narasimha and JB Pardiwala said in its order on Monday,

"This court, in an order dated January 4, 2023, noted that in view of the decisions of this court, the government of Uttar Pradesh issued a notification for setting up the Uttar Pradesh Backward Classes Commission in December 2022. Though the tenure of the commission was six months, it was to complete its task by March 31, 2023."

The Backward Classes Commission was headed by Justice (retired) Ram Avtar Singh and the other members of the commission were Chob Singh Verma, Mahendra Kumar, Santosh Kumar Viskarma and Brajesh Kumar Soni. The commission submitted its report to the UP Cabinet on 9 March.

In the past, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh too had to set up backward classes commissions to collect data about OBCs before they were allowed to stipulate quota for the OBCs in the local bodies.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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Topics:  Supreme Court   Yogi Adityanath   OBC Quota 

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