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Bihar govt moves SC asking to allow promotion in jobs to employees

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Bihar government on Monday approached the Supreme Court saying that since all the promotions in job for SC/STs remained stayed, the state is not in a position to grant any promotional benefits to the employees and in view of the stagnation the State is suffering from administrative inconvenience.

The Bihar government sought the apex court's direction that it may be permitted to grant promotion as per the earlier orders passed by the top court.

"The employees of both the general and reserved categories are suffering due to stagnation. Employees are retiring without any due promotion," the state of Bihar said in an application filed before the apex court in a pending case.

"As per the data made available by 26 out of 44 departments, it has appeared that out of 26,000 promotional posts about 20,000 are vacant in which 17,109 are of the general pool, 3597 for Schedule Caste and 209 for Scheduled Tribe categories," the application stated.

During the pendency of the matters, the promotions were being granted in terms of the interim orders passed by the top court and advisory of the central government, it said, adding that no prejudice was being caused to the employees for this interim arrangement.

On April 15, 2019, the apex court ordered a status quo in matters of reservation in promotion for SC/STs, thereby stopping the promotion or demotion of government employees in terms of its Constitution bench verdict.

By a Constitution bench verdict in 2018, the Supreme Court had slightly tweaked its judgment in the M Nagaraj case and affirmed the reservation in promotion policy but added the 'creamy layer' principle for SC and ST employees too. It had directed the Centre and states to exclude such employees from the quota benefits.

The Constitution bench had also held that while there will not be any requirement to collect quantifiable data for the purpose of identification of the backward classes, such data will have to be gathered to ascertain the adequacy of representation as well as for overall efficiency.

Bihar government in its application, filed in already pending cases, also sought direction to withdraw state government's April 11, 2019 order whereby the State government had stayed all the promotions in Bihar and also asked it to allow to make promotion as it existed prior to April 15, 2019, whereby apex court had ordered status quo and all the promotions in the State was stopped.

The application said that apex court by its May 17, 2018, and June 5, 2018 order had granted permission to the state of Bihar to grant promotions with the government of India had also issued an advisory to all the States asking them to take necessary action for reservation in promotion in accordance with the court's order.

Following this direction, the State of Bihar said it had issued a resolution on July 20, 2018, for granting promotions. However, on a contempt plea against the Bihar government's resolution, the Patna High Court had issued a contempt notice to the officials of the State and further promotion has also been restricted.

In view of the order passed by the High Court, the government of Bihar issued the order on April 4, 2019, and stayed all the promotions in the State of Bihar, the application said.

It added that in the meantime all the matters related to the dispute regarding promotion in reservation came up for hearing before the top court and on April 15, 2019, and it had ordered status quo.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, February 10 2020. 20:30 IST