OBC outfit challenges govt decision on Kunbi certificates in HC | Mumbai news - Hindustan Times
close_game
close_game

OBC outfit challenges govt decision on Kunbi certificates in HC

Feb 01, 2024 06:56 AM IST

A petition has been filed in the Bombay High Court challenging the Maharashtra government's decision to give Kunbi certificates to Marathas and their blood relatives. The petition also challenges all resolutions issued by the state government for Maratha reservation. The petitioner argues that these decisions contravene the law and deprive the OBC community of its rights. The High Court has admitted the petition, and a caveat has been filed by Maratha outfits in response.

MARATHAS VS OBCS

HT Image
HT Image

MUMBAI: Days after the Maharashtra government decided to give Kunbi certificates to Marathas and their blood relatives based on affidavits, a petition has been filed in the Bombay high court challenging the draft notification issued to this effect. The petition also challenges all the resolutions issued so far by the state government for Maratha reservation.

HT launches Crick-it, a one stop destination to catch Cricket, anytime, anywhere. Explore now!

Advocate Manoj Sasane, representing the OBC Welfare Foundation, has also asked for a stay on all the Kunbi certificates issued to Marathas from May 1, 2023, as well as a quashing of the Justice Sandeep Shinde committee constituted to decide the methodology to issue the certificates. The high court has admitted the petition, which is expected to be listed for hearing soon. In response, a caveat has been filed by Maratha outfits.

Surrendering to the demands of Maratha activist Manoj Jarange-Patil, the state government decided to issue Kunbi certificates to all 57 lakh Marathas with Kunbi antecedents to enable them to get reservation benefits under the OBC category. It also paved the way for reservation for their blood relatives and relatives by marriage within the same caste, based on affidavits filed by those having Kunbi antecedents. A draft notification was issued by the state social justice department on January 26.

Sasane said that the decisions by the Maharashtra government contravened the law and would deprive the OBC community of its rights. “The government cannot change the definition of ‘blood relatives’ simply by issuing a draft notification,” he said.

The petition filed in the HC on January 30 emphasises how several state-appointed commissions such as the Kakasaheb Kalelkar committee, Mandal Commission and a national commission did not find the Maratha community “backward”; on the contrary, they opined that it was a forward Hindu caste community. The petition also underlines the Supreme Court decision to scrap the Socially and Educationally Backward Classes (SEBC) Act 2018, which provided 12 percent reservation in education and 13 percent reservation in government jobs to Marathas.

“As per the Maratha leaders, 54 lakh revenue records are found, wherein it is stated Maratha-Kunbi certificate should be issued to all of them. There will be an imbalance if 54 lakh certificates are issued and it will cause great prejudice to the people belonging to the OBC caste,” (sic) the petition points out.

The petitioner has alleged manipulations at the lower official levels by Maratha leaders. “They are influencing the competent authority, whereby they are now required to only furnish one document, that too not of the ancestors. Even the far-most relatives are being considered for issuing caste certificates on the basis of an affidavit. Nearly 500 certificates are issued everyday by the competent authorities,” (sic) the petition claims.

It further states that lakhs of OBCs are being deprived of their constitutional right to jobs and other benefits under the OBC quota. “The opportunities that were garnered for the OBC quota have now turned into a full benefit for the Maratha community,” lamented Sasane.

Marathas and OBCs have become antagonists ever since Jarange-Patil started demanding reservation for Marathas from the OBC quota. Despite the OBC unrest, a draft notification was issued by the state government that an affidavit by the applicant establishing the relationships with his blood relatives and relatives by marriage (sage-soyare) would entitle the latter to Kunbi caste certificates after verification.

With the draft notification in place, the state government also intends bringing in changes in the Maharashtra Scheduled Castes, Denotified Tribes (Vimukta Jatis), Nomadic Tribes, Other Backward Classes and Special Backward Category (Regulation of Issuance and Verification of) Caste Certificate Rules, 2012. “The change is a danger to all the backward communities because anyone can ask for certificates for their relatives by filing an affidavit,” said Sasane.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Share this article
  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR
    author-default-90x90

    Faisal is with the political team and covers state administration and state politics. He also covers NCP.

SHARE
Story Saved
Live Score
OPEN APP
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Thursday, April 18, 2024
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Follow Us On