On 8 September 2020, Kerala High Court comprising bench of Justices S Manikumar and Shaji P Chaly directed the state and center to finalize the socio-economic caste survey to revise the reservation quota at the earliest. The Court directed that “The Commission should finalize the exercise and submit the report to the state government within six months.”
A Public Interest Litigation (PIL) was considered by the Court which was filed by Advocate VK Beeran. According to the petitioner, the State Government is supposed to revise the list of backward classes every ten years as per section 11 of Kerala State Commission for the Backward Classes Act, 1993.
It was said that by not revising the list, the government is letting the forward among the backward classes to snatch away the benefit of reservation. Last year in July, in an interim order, the High Court held that the inaction of the State Government in conducting the Socio-Economic Caste Survey reflects the failure in adhering to its statutory obligation under section 11 of the Kerala State Backward Classes Act, 1993 which requires a periodic review of the State’s OBC list.
The Court further pointed out that, Socio-Economic Caste Survey, which is a precondition for undertaking a revision is also not been conducted. The provisions under the 1993 Act basically defines that the list of backward classes is needed to be revised periodically, so that the backward classes which are represented inadequately in the government services, should equally get the benefit of reservation.