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Hopeful of saving reservation for SC/ST: Prakash Javadekar

Press Trust of India

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NEW DELHI: The government has put on hold recruitment for teaching positions in universities and colleges pending a decision on the special leave petition it has filed against a court order curtailing reservation for SC/ST and OBCs, HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar said today.

He said the government is committed to 50 per cent reservation to SC/ST and OBCs and it “does not agree” with the Allahabad High Court ruling that had in last April struck down a circular prescribing institution-wise reservation to fill vacant faculty positions.

“We are hopeful we will be able to save reservation for SC, ST and OBCs,” he said replying to zero hour mention by opposition members in the Rajya Sabha.

 

“Reservation is a Constitutional right… we stand by reservation and are committed to provide it to SC/ST and OBCs,” he said adding the Union Government and University Grants Commission (UGC) have filed separate SLPs against the order and the next date of hearing is on August 13.

He said the Allahabad High Court order was later upheld by the Supreme Court, forcing UGC to issue the March 5 circular laying down a new mechanism for implementing faculty reservations, which is calculating total posts department or subject-wise rather than institution-wise.

This meant calculating reservation in teaching posts by department, instead of basing the quota as on the number of posts available at university.

Previously, SC, ST and OBC faculty positions were calculated by treating the entire university as a unit. It grouped all posts of a grade, such as assistant profession, in all departments of a university to calculate quota. Under the new formula, where every department will be considered one separate unit, there will be a lower chance of positions being set aside for quota as there may be fewer openings.

Javadekar said his ministry had yesterday ordered a stop on filling of vacancies at universities/colleges pending decision on SLP.

“No harm will be done to reservations (to SC, ST and OBCs),” he said.

Earlier, raising the issue through a zero hour mention, Ram Gopal Yadav (SP) said the UGC had on March 5 issued a new 13-point reservation roster for SC/ST and OBC category that provided for preparing reservation list keeping department/ subject as a unit instead of the university/college.

He said as per the Constitution, 15 per cent, 7.5 per cent and 27 per cent reservation is provided for SC/ST and OBC respectively.

Till now, the UGC had specifically prohibited the practice of making department-wise cadres as that would lead to denial of reservation in small departments.

He demanded that the UGC order be declared “null and void”, a demand that was supported by Leader of the Opposition and Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad who said the roster would curtail reservation to SC, ST and OBC.

Azad said while the Constitution provided for reservation to SC and ST, the Congress-government had in 1993 provided the same to other backward classes (OBCs).

 


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National

CJI recuses from hearing petition challenging interim CBI chief appointment

Agencies

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New Delhi: Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi has recused himself from hearing a plea challenging M Nageswara Rao’s appointment as interim Director of the Central Bureau of Investigation.

Gogoi has sought transparency in the process of short-listing, selection and appointment of the CBI Director.

CJI Gogoi said he cannot hear plea as he would be part of the committee meeting to select the next CBI director.

 

.The plea will now be heard on January 24 by another bench.

The high-powered selection committee comprises the prime minister, the leader of the largest opposition party and the CJI or his nominee judge of the apex court.

A bench comprising CJI and Justice Sanjiv Khanna was hearing a PIL filed by NGO Common Cause challenging the appointment of Rao as interim CBI director.

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‘Not safe’: Mamata refuses to allow Amit Shah’s chopper to land in Malda, BJP cries foul

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KOLKATA: In yet another attempt by Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress government in West Bengal to stop Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) President Amit Shah from addressing rally in the state, the state government has denied permission for landing of Shah’s helicopter in Malda district.

The BJP president, who was recently treated for swine flu at AIIMS in New Delhi, is scheduled to address a rally in Malda on January 22. As per BJP’s plan, Shah will reach Kolkata and then take a helicopter from there to reach Malda where he will participate in a public rally with BJP workers from North Bengal.

The Malda district administration has informed the BJP that it is not possible to grant permission to land helicopters at Malda airport this week.

 

“As per report of the executive engineer, PWD (civil), Malda Division, up-gradation of work at Malda Airport is going on in full swing. A large quantity of fine sand, dust and GSB materials is lying all along the runway and also stacked all around the site,” Additional District Magistrate of Malda said in a letter to BJP.

The letter added that the ongoing construction work has also affected the maintenance of temporary helipad at the airport and it is not possible to grant permission to Shah’s chopper to land at Malda Airport.

Meanwhile, General Secretary of BJP Malda unit had written to Malda DM saying that West Bengal government is using Malda Airport for landing their helicopter every Wednesday and they are refusing permission to Shah’s helicopter.

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Centre threatening to impose Prez’s rule in Andhra: Chandrababu

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Amaravati: Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu on Monday alleged that the Centre was threatening to impose President’s Rule in the state but, he said, nobody would be cowed down by such threats.

He claimed Prime Minister Narendra Modi was a “negative leader” under whose leadership the country was regressing. Addressing a teleconference with the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) leaders, he attacked the prime minister and the BJP, saying they did nothing special for Andhra.

“They say one Union minister will come to the state every week. What good have they done for the state? On top of it, they are issuing threats that President’s Rule will be imposed in Andhra Pradesh. There is nobody here to be cowed down by their threats,” Naidu said.

 

Referring to the opposition parties’ rally in Kolkata two days ago, the TDP chief said it marked the beginning of the end of dictatorial rule and gave confidence to the people of the country. “We will hold a similar rally in Amaravati in which leaders of 22 parties will take part,” Naidu added.

The TDP chief lashed out at his Telangana counterpart K Chandrasekhar Rao and YSR Congress president Y S Jaganmohan Reddy, saying they were working under Modi’s direction.

The TRS and the YSRC were conspiring to create misgivings among the backward classes so that they are distanced from the TDP, he alleged. He said the backward communities should unitedly thwart such attempts.

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