27 Aug : The Supreme Court on Thursday reserved its judgement on the contentious issue whether candidates belonging to reserved categories selected for union civil services on merit should be appointed against reserved posts or under the general quota.
The hearing before a five-judge Constitution Bench comprising Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan and Justices S H Kapadia, R V Raveendran, P Sudershan Reddy and P Sathasivam, which ended after six days of marathon arguments, assumes significance as it would have bearing upon the procedure for allotment of posts adopted by UPSC as well as aggrieved candidates.
While referring the matter to the Constitution Bench, the apex court had said “an authoritative pronouncement was needed on the issue”.
Among the various contentious issues, the Bench was to decide whether reserved category candidates, i.e Other Backward Castes, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, who are selected on merit and placed in list of general or unreserved category candidates could be considered as reserved category candidates at the time of service allocation.
The focus of the entire matter was Rule 16 (2) of the Civil Services Examination Rules as amended in 2005 which mandates that a reserved category candidate selected on merit as unreserved or general category can be considered as reserved category for allocation of a post on preferential basis.