Maratha Reservation ,Supreme Court and Socially & Educationally Backward Classes: Constitutional Provisions Explained

The Supreme Court Bench while considering the validity of Maratha reservation and 102nd Constitution Amendment was unanimous on issues such as the Maratha quota law was invalid and the 1992 Mandal judgement, capping total reservation to 50 per cent, did not need a relook or reference to larger bench.


Article 340 of the Indian Constitution lays down conditions for the appointment of a Commission to investigate the conditions of backward classes.

      The President may by order appoint a Commission comprising of such persons that he thinks fit to investigate the conditions and background of socially and educationally backward classes that lies within the territory of India.

ART 338B

          The 102nd Constitution amendment Act of 2018 inserted Articles 338B, which deals with the structure, duties and powers of the Commission for the socially and educationally backward classes (NCBC),


  • 102nd Constitution Amendment Act, 2018 provides constitutional status to the National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC).
  • It has the authority to examine complaints and welfare measures regarding socially and educationally backward classes.
  • Previously NCBC was a statutory body under the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment.

        342A which deals with power of the President to notify a particular caste as socially and educationally backward classes SEBC and power of Parliament to change the list.

Supreme Court in Indira Sawhney & Ors. v. Union of India

  1. Upheld Implementation of separate reservation for other backward classes in central government jobs.
  2. Ordered to exclude Creamy layer of other backward classes from enjoying reservation facilities.
  3. Ordered to restrict reservations within the 50% limit.

First Backward Commission under Art 340 was Kalekar Commission. Second Backward Commission under Art 340 was Mandal Commission


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