High court stays reservation for Jats and five other communities

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 Haryana : The Haryana High Court has put an interim stay on the reservations for Jats in government jobs and educational institutes granted by the state after a massive agitation by the community in February. In a major development, the Punjab and Haryana High Court on Thursday stayed the decision of the ML Khattar government to grant 10% reservation to Jats and five other communities in Haryana.

At least 30 people were killed and over 320 injured during the violent protests and in clashes with the police. Property and assets worth hundreds of crores were damaged or destroyed in the violence that paralysed the state for nearly 10 days.

The development comes months after the Haryana Assembly unanimously passed the Haryana Backward Classes (Reservation in Services and Admission in Educational Institutions) Bill, 2016, promising 10% reservation to Jats and five other castes in government jobs and educational institutions.The high court passed this order while hearing a petition challenging the constitutional validity of The Haryana Backward Classes (Reservation in Services and Admission in Educational Institutions) Act 2016 that was passed unanimously by the state assembly on March 29.

The Act was challenged by Murari Lal Gupta of Bhiwani, who was seeking direction to quash block 'C' of the act, which provides reservation to the Jat community under a newly carved Backward Classes (C) category. The petitioner submitted that reservation for the Jat community has been provided under the new act on the basis of the Justice KC Gupta commission report, which the Supreme Court has already quashed.

The Bill was passed on March 29, days before the April 3 deadline set by the Jats, who had threatened a violent agitation if their demand for reservation was not met. The Bill included six castes – Jats, Jat Sikhs, Rors, Bishnois, Tyagis and Muslim Jats – in the list of Backward Classes by bifurcating it and creating an additional Block (C). There are 77 castes that were already covered under Backward Classes Block (A) and (B).

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