In a key judgment by the Supreme court on Quotas and job reservations on Friday said that claiming 'reservation in promotions is not a fundamental right' and it can't order a state government to provide the reservation for people belonging to Scheduled Castes (SC) and Scheduled Tribes (ST) in government jobs.
"The state governments are not bound to make a reservation and even the courts can't issue a mandamus directing States to provide reservation," said the bench of Supreme Court comprising Justices L. Nageswara Rao and Hemant Gupta.
The apex court further said, "As per the law laid down by this Court, there is no doubt that the State Government is not bound to make reservations. There is no fundamental right which inheres in an individual to claim reservation in promotions. No mandamus can be issued by the Court directing the State Government to provide reservations."
The state government is not in any obligation and it has the absolute discretion to decide whether or not to provide for reservation in jobs or reservations in promotions the Supreme court judgment said. However, if a State wishes to exercise its discretion and make a reservation in promotions, it is bound to collect data showing the inadequacy of representation of SCs/STs in government services.
In case if someone challenges the decision of the State government to provide SC/ST reservation in promotion to a particular public post, it would have to place the data and prove before the court that reservation was necessary and does not affect the efficiency of administration.
This ruling came in a case regarding the validity of the Uttarakhand government's decision to fill up the positions in government services in the state without providing reservation to SC/STs. The Supreme court also overturned a 2012 ruling by the Uttarakhand High Court that directed the state to provide quotas to specified communities.