New Delhi: A total of 325 Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) aspirants are likely to be affected if the quashing of 4.5 percent sub-quota for minorities in central institutions was not stayed, the government told the Supreme Court on Wednesday. Additional Solicitor General Gourab Banerji told this to the apex court bench of Justice K Radhakrishnan and Justice JS Khehar.
The court issued notice on the government's plea and declined an interim stay, for now, on the Andhra Pradesh High Court's verdict quashing the 4.5 percent sub-quota for minorities within 27 percent reservation for the Other Backward Classes (OBCs). The notice was issued to R Krishnaiah on whose petition the high court quashed the sub-quota.
Banerji told the court that there were 4,861 IIT seats under the general category and 2,169 for the OBCs under the 27 percent reservation and 443 under the 4.5 percent sub-quota. The ASG told the court that against the 443 available seats under the sub-quota only 325 students succeeded in qualifying for admission to IITs.
As Banerji reeled out figures, Justice Khehar asked him how 443 measured to 4.5 percent sub-quota within the OBCs' reservation. Justice Khehar said that it was much more and was about 20 percent of the total OBC seats. "It is not marginal but 20 percent," the court said.
Earlier in response to a query by the court, Banerji told the court that 4.5 percent sub-quota would have a marginal affect on the OBC candidates under the overall 27 percent reservation. The court also inquired from Banerji about the number of students belonging to religious minorities that had succeeded in the general category, OBC category and under the 4.5 sub-quota.
"How many religious minority students in general category, OBCs reservation and sub-quota", the court asked.
The court said this in the course of the hearing of a petition by the government challenging the May 28 order of the high court by which it quashed the carving out 4.5 percent sub-quota for minorities within the 27 percent OBC reservation.
The Dec 22, 2011 office memorandum for the sub-quota for socially and educationally backward classes of citizens belonging to minority communities in central educational institutions and jobs was announced by the central government ahead of the assembly elections in five states earlier this year.