JAIPUR: The Ashok Gehlot governments move to grant an additional 4% reservation to five castes, including Gujjars has been challenged in the high court, within 15 days of its passage of the Rajasthan Backward Classes Amendment Act- 2019 in the Assembly. The Act had legislated for five castes including Gujjar, Lauhar, Banjara, Rebari and Raika enhancing reservations to 5% from 1% in the MBC (Most Backward category), which took total reserved percentage to 54, above the Supreme Court mandated maximum of 50%.
Petitioner lawyer Abhinav Sharma said the reservation was given citing the proportion of their population, whereas according to the Constitution, quota is not allowed on the basis of census. The petition reads that the state has referred to emergency situation in the state to give 5 percent reservation to other castes including Gujjars. But there were no such condition in the state. Gujjars were agitating and the state was compelled to give in.
Sharma claimed, constitutionally, quotas are allowed on the basis of educational and social backwardness, but this was not kept in mind while granteing additional reservations. He said, the high court had earlier barred quota above 50 per cent and in this case only one per cent reservation was due and it was being already being given. Gujjars were given reservations five times since 2008 only to be struck down in courts.