The pro-quota and anti-quota strikes had unnerved the Uttarakhand government in the recent days. Union employees of the State Government had succeeded in paralyzing the operations of several departments.
A strike was held by certain sections of employees, demanding implementation of the verdict laid down by the high court. The court’s verdict decreed that promotions in government job should no longer be based on caste.
On the other hand, employees belonging to the Scheduled Castes [SC] and Scheduled Tribes [ST] urged the government to leave the policy unchanged. The State Government hence had to think of a neutral alternative that could soothe the agitation of both the parties.
The state cabinet adopted the decision of installing a committee to handle the dispute. The committee was assigned the task of preparing a report that analyzed the promotions based on castes, in all government jobs.
The committee headed by Irshad Hussain, a former judge of the high court, had been granted a time span of 3 months to finalize the report. The decision to install a committee was spear headed by the Uttarakhand Chief Minister, Vijay Bahuguna, as a measure to handle the pressure exerted by unions all across the State Government.
Also, the Departmental Promotion Committee (DPC) meetings were reinitiated by the government as confirmed by Vijay Bahuguna. The chief minister asserted that though no seats would be reserved for the members of the SC/ST for any promotions, notional promotions would be granted for retirees in July-August.
On Oct 19th, employees of the state government staged a protest against the caste based quota. Last month, Chief Minister, Vijay Bahuguna had assured the protestors that the Uttarakhand government would revisit the dispute of the caste based reservations after the by poll elections of the Tehri Lok Sabha.