New Delhi: The Reservation in Promotion case was to come up for hearing in Supreme Court today but the Court did not take up the matter as Justice Prafulla Chandra Pant, one of the two judges constituting the regular bench, was on leave.
When the matter came up in the Supreme Court before the special bench, comprising Justice Madan B Lokur and Justice Uday Umesh Lalit, the latter holding the bench in place of Justice Prafulla Chandra Pant, it was decided by the Court that since the hearing cannot be concluded today it should be adjourned till February 14.
Representing the respondents – the Madhya Pradesh Government employees and officers who have been adversely affected by the 2002 Rules for reservation in promotion for the SCs and STs – were senior Supreme Court advocates Ram Jethmalani and Rajeev Dhawan. From the Government side and on behalf of AJJAKS, Sanjay Hegde, Vivek Tankha and Indira Jaising were present. The Madhya Pradesh High Court had quashed this rule declaring it as unconstitutional on 30 April 2016. Ten days after that the State Government went to the Supreme Court challenging this order.
Since May last year, the State Government has tried its best through its lawyers representing the case in Supreme Court to prolong the hearing on one pretext or the other. Even yesterday, applications were filed in Court on behalf of the State Government to highlight some facts. These were not allowed by Court which gave directions that related matters can be raised during regular hearing of this case.