VIJAYAWADA: The Andhra Pradesh High Court on Wednesday observed that 75 per cent quota for locals in government and private jobs may be unconstitutional and directed the State government to inform if the law on quota for locals was enacted as per the Constitution.
A division bench comprising Chief Justice GK Maheswari and Justice Kanneganti Lalitha admitted a petition filed by lawyer Ch Varalakshmi challenging the validity of the AP Employment of Local Candidates in Industries/Factories Act-2019. It gave the government four weeks to file a counter and deferred the hearing.
Earlier, Supreme Court advocate B Adinarayana Rao, appearing for the petitioner, submitted that under Section 3 of the Act enacted last year, failure to reserve 75 per cent of the jobs to locals would invite penalty. “75 per cent reservation is violative of Article 16(2), (3) of the Constitution.
The Supreme Court had in the past struck down the Mulki rules which mandate reservation for only those locals with 12 years of nativity,” he argued and asserted that the 75 per cent quota for locals in industries or factories is illegal. Advocate Sumanth Reddy, appearing for the government, said those impacted by the quota may contest it legally but a lawyer or others have no locus standi. However, the bench opined that anyone can question it as public interest is involved in the government decision.