Car reservation

Panchamasali reservation: K’taka HC stays on high-level committee work

PTI, August 21, 2022, 07:55 HST

Bengaluru: The Karnataka High Court has issued an interim suspension from the High Level Committee, which was tasked with suggesting whether the Panchamasali sub-sect of Lingayats were eligible to be included in Category 2A of reservations.

On March 10, 2021, the state government tasked the three-member panel headed by retired High Court Justice, Justice Subhash B Adi to suggest whether Panchamasalis, currently in Category 3B, could be moved to category 2A.

The Backward Castes Federation of Karnataka State has asked the court to challenge the terms of reference given to the committee.

The Federation claimed that the Karnataka State Commission for Backward Classes is the sole authority which can decide on the inclusion or exclusion of any caste from the list of backward classes. Therefore, the mandate given to the committee was not provided for by law.

The committee was formed by decree of the government. The Federation claimed that there was no such provision in the Karnataka State Commission for the Backward Classes Act 1995.

A single judge bench heard the motion earlier this year and referred it to a division bench because it had to answer a substantive question of law. On Friday, a division bench of the court suspended the work of the committee and adjourned the hearing until August 24.