Parliament passes 127th Constitutional Amendment Bill on OBC list.

Parliament has unanimously passed 127th Constitutional Amendment Bill. The bill seeks to clarify few provisions of 102nd Constitutional Amendment Bill and to reinstate the states’ power of notifying the list of socially and educationally backward classes. This amendment will amend Article 342A (1) and Article 342A (2). Article 342A (3) will also be introduced which will authorize the states to have their own list. Along with Article 342A, it will also amend Articles 366 (26c) and 338B (9). After amendment in these articles, the provisions would let states directly notify Socially and Educationally Backward Classes without any reference form National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC).

The Rajya Sabha voted for the bill with the majority of the strength of the House and not less than the two-third majority of members present in the House during voting. 187 voted in its favour and there was no voting against it.

Social Justice and Empowerment Minister Virendra Kumar who moved the bill said the legislation will help reinstate the powers of states to have their own lists of OBCs so that various communities can be given social and economic justice. He also said that the legislation would also help in strengthening the federal structure of the country.

This amendment was called for after the Supreme Court in its May 2021 ruling related to Maratha reservation wherein it upheld the 102nd Constitutional Amendment Act. The hon’ble Court in the case of Jaishri Laxmanrao Patil v. Chief Minister, Maharashtra (Civil Appeal No. 3123 of 2020) held that the President, on the recommendations of the National Commission for Backward Classes, would decide the communities which would be included in the OBC list. The 127th Constitutional Amendment Bill amends 102nd Constitutional Amendment Act and authorizes President to notify the socially and educationally backward classes only for the central list. This amendment reverses the Supreme Court ruling and gives back the power to the state governments to have their own state list.

Image Credits: – Live Law

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