File Copyright Online - File mutual Divorce in Delhi - Online Legal Advice - Lawyers in India

Legislative Commentary-Article 330, Constitution Of India, 1950

Extract Of The Relevant Legislative Text

Article 330, Constitution of India, 1950

330. Reservation of seats for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in the House of the People:

  1. Seats shall be reserved in the House of the People for
    1. the Scheduled Castes;
    2. the Scheduled Tribes except the Scheduled Tribes in the autonomous districts of Assam; and
    3. the Scheduled Tribes in the autonomous districts of Assam
       
  2. The number of seats reserved in any State or Union territory for the Scheduled Castes or the Scheduled Tribes under clause (1) shall bear, as nearly as may be, the same proportion to the total number of seats allotted to that State or Union territory in the House of the People as the population of the Scheduled Castes in the State or Union territory or of the Scheduled Tribes in the State or Union territory or part of the State or Union territory, as the case may be, in respect of which seats are so reserved, bears to the total population of the State or Union territory.
     
  3. Notwithstanding anything contained in clause (2), the number of seats reserved in the House of the People for the Scheduled Tribes in the autonomous districts of Assam shall bear to the total number of seats allotted to that State a proportion not less than the population of the Scheduled Tribes in the said autonomous districts bears to the total population of the State Explanation In this article 332, the expression population means the population as ascertained at the last preceding census of which the relevant figures have been published: Provided that the reference in this Explanation to the last preceding census of which the relevant figures have been published shall, until the relevant figures for the first census taken after the year 2000 have been published, be construed as a reference to the 1971 census

List Of Amendments To The Text
  1. The Constitution (Twenty-Third Amendment) Act, 1969

    Statement of Objects and Reasons: More than ninety per cent. of the population of the State of Nagaland, which came into being in 1963, in tribal. It would be anomalous to make revision for reservation for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in Legislatures in the States where they are in a majority.

    It is, therefore, proposed, as desired by the Government of Nagaland, not to make any reservation for the Scheduled Tribes in Nagaland either in the House of the People or in the State Legislative Assembly. Articles 330 and 332 of the Constitution are being amended for this purpose.

    Amendment of Article 330.

    In article 330 of the Constitution, in sub-clause (b) of clause (1), for the words "except the Scheduled Tribes in the tribal areas of Assam", the words "except the Scheduled Tribes in the tribal areas of Assam and in Nagaland" shall be substituted.
     
  2. The Constitution (Thirty-First- Amendment) Act, 1973

    Statement of Objects and Reasons: Article 330 of the Constitution relates to reservation of seats in the Lok Sabha for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes. The provisions of this article have, however, been made inapplicable to the State of Nagaland on the ground that it has a predominantly tribal population. According to the 197-census, 88.6 per cent. of Nagaland's population belong to the Scheduled Tribes.

    The corresponding figures for the State of Meghalaya and the Union territories of Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram are 80.5 per cent., 79.0 per cent. and 94.3 per cent. respectively. Government, therefore, consider that the provisions of article 330 should not apply also to the predominantly tribal units of Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram.

    Similarly, it is considered that as in the case of Nagaland, there need be no reservation of seats for Scheduled Tribes in the Legislative Assembly of the State of Meghalaya and the article 332 of the Constitution may be amended suitably. Clauses 3 and 4 of the Bill seek to achieve these objects.

    Amendment of Article 330:

    1. In article 330 of the Constitution:

      1. in sub-clause (b) of clause (1), for the words "except the Scheduled Tribes in the tribal areas of Assam and in Nagaland, and", the following shall be substituted, namely:-
        "except the Scheduled Tribes-
        1. in the tribal areas of Assam;
        2. in Nagaland;
        3. in Meghalaya;
        4. in Arunachal Pradesh; and
        5. in Mizoram; and;
      2. after clause (2), the following clause shall be inserted, namely:


       
    2. Notwithstanding anything contained in clause (2), the number of seats reserved in the House of the People for the Scheduled Tribes in the autonomous districts of Assam shall bear to the total number of seats allotted to that State a proportion not less than the population of the Scheduled Tribes in the said autonomous districts bears to the total population of the State."
       
    3. The amendment made to article 330 of the Constitution by sub-section (1) shall not affect any representation in the House of the People until the dissolution of the House of the People existing at the commencement of this Act.

     
  3. The Constitution (Forty-Second Amendment) Act, 1976 Amendment of Article 330:

    In article 330 of the Constitution, the following Explanation shall be inserted at the end, namely: -
    Explanation -
    In this article and in article 332, the expression "population" means the population as ascertained at the last preceding census of which the relevant figures have been published:
    Provided that the reference in this Explanation to the last preceding census of which the relevant figures have been published shall, until the relevant figures for the first census taken after the year 2000 have been published, be construed as a reference to the 1971-census.
     
  4. The Constitution (Fifty-First Amendment) Act, 1984

    Statement of Objects and Reasons:The Meghalaya Legislative Assembly passed a resolution on 31st March, 1980 urging the Government of India to provide for reservation of seats for Scheduled Tribes in the State Legislative Assembly and also in the House of the People on the pattern obtaining in other States in the country.

    The State Government, therefore, recommended amendment of articles 330 and 332 of the Constitution. The Governments of Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram have also supported the amendment in respect of their respective areas.

    It is, therefore, proposed to amend article 330 of the Constitution to provide for reservation of seats in the Lok Sabha for Scheduled Tribes in Meghalaya, Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram and article 332 to provide for similar reservation in the Legislative Assemblies of Nagaland and Meghalaya. The amendments have been proposed to meet the aspirations of the local tribal population.

    Amendment of Article 330

    (1) In article 330 of the Constitution, in clause (1), for sub-clause (b), the following sub-clause shall be substituted, namely: -
    "(b) the Scheduled Tribes except the Scheduled Tribes in the autonomous districts of Assam; and".

    (2) The amendment made to article 330 of the Constitution by sub-section (1) shall not affect any representation in the House of the People until the dissolution of the House of the People existing at the commencement of this Act.
     
  5. The Constitution (Eighty-Fourth Amendment) Act, 2002

    In Article 330 of the Constitution, in the proviso to the Explanation, for the figures Amendment of "2000" and "1971", the figures "2026" and "1991" shall respectively be substituted.
     
  6. The Constitution (Eighty-Seventh Amendment) Act, 2003
    Amendment of Article 330:
    In article 330 of the Constitution, in the Explanation, in the proviso, for the figures "1991", the figures "2001" shall be substituted. 

Background
Article 330, inter alia, provided for reservation of seats for the scheduled castes in the same proportion to the total number of seats allotted to the State or Union Territory in the House of the people as the population of the scheduled castes in the State or Union territory or part thereof, as the case may be, in respect of which, seats are so reserved, bears to the total population of the State or Union Territory.

Inclusive growth demands that all social groups have equal access to the services provided by the State and equal opportunity for upward economic and social mobility. It is also necessary to ensure that there is no discrimination against any section of our society. In India, certain social groups such as the SCs, STs, OBCs and Minorities have historically been disadvantaged and vulnerable. The Constitution of India guarantees protection from social injustice and all forms of exploitation (Art. 46).

It guarantees equality before law (Art. 14), and enjoins upon the State not to discriminate against any citizen on grounds of caste (Art. 15 (1)). Untouchability is abolished and its practice in any form is forbidden (Art. 17). The Constitution mandates that no citizen shall, on grounds only of caste or race, be subjected to any disability and restriction (Art. 15 (2)).

It empowers the State to make provisions for reservation in educational institutions (Art. 15 (4) and (5)), and in appointments for posts in favour of SCs (Art. 16 (4), 16(4A), 16(4B) and Art. 335). Reservation of seats for SCs in the Lok Sabha is provided under Article 330 and in the State Assemblies under Article 332.

Articles 330 to 334 provide for reservation of seats for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in Parliament and the State legislatures. These reservations, which were originally meant to remain in force for 20 years form the commencement of the Constitution are being extended from time to time 

Objectives/Purpose
The Constitution permits preferential treatment in the form of reservations for three categories of people:
  1. Scheduled caste,
  2. Scheduled Tribes and
  3. Other backward classes.

The reservation of these classes are given in three specific areas: reservation of seats in the legislature reservation of jobs and reservation of seats in the educational institutions. Article 330 and 332 provide for the reservation of seats for the scheduled caste and Scheduled Tribes in the house of the people and the legislature assemblies of the states. These special provisions for the reservation of the seats in the legislature were provided purely as a transitory measure.

An objective assessment of the policy of legislature reservation warrants its early reversal. To ensure the protection of backward classes of citizens it was necessary that members of backward classes be appointed in state services and so the power was given to the state to provide for reservation of such appointment.

Scope Of Application
Article 330 of the Constitution of India has been enacted and amended over time in the interests of social justice as enshrined in the Preamble to the Constitution of India as well as to protect the interests of Schedule Castes and Schedule Tribes by reserving seats for them in the Parliament and State Legislatures of Assam and other North-Eastern States of India.

The extent of application of this Article is limited to Schedule Castes, Schedule Tribes and only to the reservation of seats in the Parliament and the State Legislatures mentioned in the provision. 

Interpretation In Cases
Reservation for a backward class is not a constitutional mandate. The provisions of Articles 330(1)(b) and (c) show that the Constitution has treated Scheduled Tribes in the autonomous districts of Assam as a separate category distinct from all other Scheduled Tribes.

This clearly indicates that when the Constitution makers wanted to make a sub classification of Scheduled Tribes, they have themselves made it in the text of the Constitution itself and have not empowered any legislature or Government to make such a sub classification. 

In Chinnaiah  the Court also said that Art. 330 indicates that there can be only one list of Scheduled Castes in regard to a State and that list should include all specified castes, races or tribes or part or groups notified in that Presidential List.

In the entire Constitution wherever reference has been made to "Scheduled Castes" it refers only to the list prepared by the President under Article 341 and there is no reference to any subclassification or division in the said list except, may be, for the limited purpose of Article 330.
Therefore, it is clear that the Constitution intended all the castes including the subcastes, races and tribes mentioned in the list to be members of one group for the purpose of the Constitution and this group cannot be subdivided for any purpose. The constitution intended that all the castes included in the Schedule under Article 341 would be deemed to be one class of persons.

The principles laid down in Indra Sawhney case,  for sub classification of other Backward Classes cannot be applied as a precedent for sub classification or sub grouping Scheduled Castes in the Presidential List because that very judgment itself has specifically held that subdivision of other backward classes is not applicable to scheduled castes and scheduled tribes. This is for the obvious reason i.e. the Constitution itself has kept the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes List out of interference by the State Government.  

Current Status
The Amendment was undertaken to satisfy the aspirations of the local tribal population. Even though these States are predominantly tribal areas, the purpose of the Fifty-first Amendment is to ensure that the members of the Scheduled Tribes in these areas do not fail to secure a minimal representation because of their inability to compete with the advanced sections of the society.

For the purpose of providing protection in terms of political representation, Article 330 of the Indian Constitution provides that seats in proportion to the population of scheduled castes and scheduled tribes in particular states are reserved in the Lok Sabha. Only those states which are predominantly tribal are excluded from the operation of this provision.

Earlier Section 2 of the 23rd Amendment of the Constitution in 1969, excluded the operation of article 330 to the tribal areas of Nagaland, but the exclusion has now been extended to the states of Meghalaya, Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh by the 31st Constitutional Amendment Act as these states are predominantly tribal in nature. 

Conclusion
The validity of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Provision of Transfer of Certain Lands Act, 1978) which restricted the transfer by SC or ST of any land granted to them for particular period of time (e.g. 3 years) has been upheld because of their poverty, lack of education and backwardness which was exploited by the stronger section of the society was not unreasonable and hence not violative of Art. 19(1)(f) of the Constitution.

If the object of reservation is to take affirmative action in favour of a class which is socially, educationally and economically backward, the State's jurisdiction while exercising its executive or legislative power is to decide as to what extent reservation should be made for them either in public service or for obtaining admission in educational institutions.

Having already fulfilled this part of its constitutional obligation, such a class cannot be subdivided so as to give more preference to a minuscule proportion of the Scheduled Castes in preference to other members of the same class. It is not open to the State to subclassify a class already recognized by the Constitution and allot a portion of the already reserved quota amongst the State created subclass within the list of scheduled casts.

Furthermore, the emphasis on efficient administration placed by Art. 335 of the Constitution must also be considered when the claims of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes to Page 1073 employment in the services of the Union are to be considered. Since the State had already allotted 15% of the total quota of the reservation available for backward classes to the Scheduled Castes the question of allotting any reservation under the impugned Act to the backward classes did not arise. The very fact that a legal fiction has been created is itself suggestive of the fact that the legislature of a State cannot take any action which would be contrary to or inconsistent therewith. The very idea of placing different castes or tribes or group or part thereof in a State as a conglomeration by way of a deeming definition clearly suggests that they are not to be subdivided or sub-classified further.

A uniform yardstick must be adopted for giving benefits to the members of the Scheduled Castes for the purpose of the Constitution. For the purpose of identifying backwardness, a further inquiry can be made by appointing a commission as to who amongst the members of the Scheduled Castes is more backward.

If benefits of reservation are not percolating to them equitably, measures should be taken to see that they are given such adequate or additional training so as to enable them to compete with the others but the same would not mean that in the process of rationalizing the reservation to the Scheduled Castes the constitutional mandate of Articles 14, 15 and 16 could be violated.

Reservation must be considered from the social objective angle, having regard to the constitutional scheme, and not as a political issue and, thus, adequate representation must be given to the members of the Scheduled Castes as a group and not to two or more groups of persons or members of castes. 

Law Article in India

Ask A Lawyers

You May Like

Legal Question & Answers



Lawyers in India - Search By City

Copyright Filing
Online Copyright Registration


LawArticles

Section 482 CrPc - Quashing Of FIR: Guid...

Titile

The Inherent power under Section 482 in The Code Of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (37th Chapter of th...

Whether Caveat Application is legally pe...

Titile

Whether in a criminal proceeding a Caveat Application is legally permissible to be filed as pro...

How To File For Mutual Divorce In Delhi

Titile

How To File For Mutual Divorce In Delhi Mutual Consent Divorce is the Simplest Way to Obtain a D...

Copyright: An important element of Intel...

Titile

The Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) has its own economic value when it puts into any market ...

The Factories Act,1948

Titile

There has been rise of large scale factory/ industry in India in the later half of nineteenth ce...

Law of Writs In Indian Constitution

Titile

Origin of Writ In common law, Writ is a formal written order issued by a body with administrati...

Lawyers Registration
Lawyers Membership - Get Clients Online


File caveat In Supreme Court Instantly