Left miffed with SCs quota judgement, Cong plays safe

New Delhi, Mar 29 | Updated: Mar 30 2007, 05:30am hrs
The Supreme Courts decision to stay the implementation of quotas for OBCs came under sharp criticism from various political outfits and political leaders. The government, however, refused to react on the issue at this juncture and said that the law ministry will study the Supreme Court order and then take decision."

Toeing a similar line, Veerappa Moily, who headed the Oversight Committee on reservation set up by the Centre, also said that he would comment only after studying the judgment. Human resource development minister Arjun Singh said that the decision would affect the admission process this academic year.

Saying that the government will strictly go by the Constitutional provisions", Singh added, I am hopeful that the Supreme Court will give a go ahead. All legal actions will be explored." He refused to spell out the legal options to be explored by the government.

While the Left parties were unanimous in opposing the judgement and demanded the Parliaments intervention in the issue, the Congress adopted a cautious approach and tried to get into the technical details. This is an interim arrangement till the next hearing and if a better factual foundation is available then I am sure that can also be used," Congress spokesman Abhishek Singhvi said. He claimed that the court has not stigmatised the concept of reservation but it is against the lack of database."

As expected, the BJP did not lose the opportunity to attack the UPA over the issue. The apex court decision is the result of the UPA governments abject failure to project its case of social backwardness in the right perspective", BJP spokesman Prakash Javedkar said.

Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar, who felt that the Supreme Court has disappointed the backward classes, wanted the Prime Minister to convene an all-party meeting to discuss the issue.

Lok Jan Shakti (LJP) chief and minister for steel Ram Vilas Paswan described the Supreme Courts decision as a setback to the deprived sections of the society.

While the CPI(M) merely described the decision as unfortunate", the CPI used a harsher tone by calling it retrograde".

The Forward Bloc wanted the Parliament to intervene in the matter and the RSP felt that this was a case of another judicial activism."

Describing the decision as retrograde," the CPI national secretary D Raja felt that the judgment will not help in the implementation of policies for establishment of social justice and equality.

Raja observed: Time has come for the Parliament to have an effective say on the issue. It cannot be left to judiciary."

Tamil Nadu chief minister M Karunanidhi, who described the judgement as shocking", convened an urgent meeting of the allies on Thursday night to discuss the situation.

The PMK, a strong supporter of the reservation also opposed the order. PMK founder S Ramadoss said in a statement that the order was in the expected lines as the Supreme Court never accepts any law for social justice."