The Supreme Court on Wednesday stayed a Maharashtra state law providing reservation for the Maratha community in government jobs and education.
A bench headed by Justice LN Rao issued the interim order of stay while referring a clutch of petitions to a larger bench of five or more judges.
The top court order means there will not be a quota for the Maratha community in state government jobs and educational institutions until the matter is decided by the larger bench.
While issuing the interim directive, the bench made it clear that the admissions to post-graduate courses will not be disturbed since the PG exams had got over in July itself.
The stay order has come even as the Maharashtra government had submitted that there would be no regular appointment in the jobs for the time being.
The Socially and Educationally Backward Classes (SEBC) Act provides for 12-13% quota to Maratha community in jobs and education.
The petitioners, who have laid the challenge to Maratha reservation — which takes quota percentage in the State over the 50% mark declared by a nine-judge Bench of the Supreme Court in the Indira Sawhney case — have asked for a 11-judge bench to decide the contentions.
The appeals have said that the Bombay High Court’s decision is seriously erroneous as the state law has breached the 50% cap on reservation fixed by a Constitution Bench in the Indira Sawhney judgment. It has also been contended that the high court decision was based on incomplete data.
They have said the reservation law was enacted under political pressure, bypassing the laid down norms.