The Supreme Court on Monday decided to hear a public interest litigation seeking exemption of the operation of the 'creamy layer' rule within the Other Backward Classes for persons engaged in hereditary occupations.
The petition filed by Bharatiya Janata Party member of Parliament Haribhau Rathod came up for hearing before a Bench comprising Chief Justice Y K Sabharwal, Justice C K Thakker and Justice R V Raveendran, which decided to hear it on Friday along with another petition in which similar relief has been sought.
The MP from Yavatmal in Maharashtra has sought exemption of operation of the rule of 'creamy layer' for persons working as artisans or engaged in other hereditary occupations.
In this regard, he sought implementation of the 1993 Office Memorandum of Ministry of Social Welfare and Empowerment, which provided that the rule of exclusion of creamy layer in reservation for OBCs under Article 16 (4) of the Constitution would not apply to persons working as artisans or engaged in hereditary occupations.
Advocate Shree Pal Singh, appearing for the MP, said that though the memorandum had envisaged preparing a list of such occupations, government had failed to come out with it even after 13 years.
A large number of persons throughout the country engaged in hereditary occupations like skinning of dead animals etc have been deprived of the benefit as provided by the office memorandum only because the list has not been notified so far, the PIL said.
Before deciding to hear the PIL on Friday, the Bench put several questions to the advocate and observed that balance has to be maintained between the socially and economically backward and those who are economically well off in that class.
The Bench also sought to know what the financial limitations are for those to be included in the category of creamy layer.
The court said the problem occurs when the children may not be doing the work of their father, forefathers and others in the family.