PMO for ordinance to counter court ruling on SC/ST -Rakesh Mohan Chaturvedi

-The Economic Times

NEW DELHI: After a successful Bharat Bandh against the Supreme Court judgement on the SC/ST Act, the government is worried about losing the perception battle to rival political parties on being pro-Dalit.

While the suggestion for issuing an Ordinance-if needed to counter an adverse SC verdict on the review petitioncame from the Prime Minister’s Office, some cabinet ministers are of the view that issues like reservation in promotion and quota in private sector jobs also be discussed.

Sources said some senior cabinet ministers have strongly expressed their ire over the weak presentation of the government view by the Additional Solicitor General in the apex court on March 20 when the SC/ST Act case was heard.

A few cabinet ministers in the Narendra Modi government raised the issue of filing a review petition a week after the SC judgement and informed the PM that not doing so will antagonise the Dalit community.

In a dinner meeting with the Prime Minister on March 28, Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan and Social Justice Minister Thawar Chand Gehlot raked up the issue. The Prime Minister had assured them then that it is already in the works. However, the fact that the review petition was filed only after 12 days (6 working days) on April 2 has angered the Dalit MPs and union ministers in the BJP government.

This delay was also broached by some BJP lawmakers who were told that “holidays and bureaucratic process” were responsible for it. Many find it hard to believe that the review petition-which deals with the restoration of the SC/ST Act to its original form- required much work.

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The Economic Times, 14 April, 2018,

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