The Fact News Service
Chandigarh, September 14
The Punjab and Haryana High Court has issued notices to Punjab Govt., Department of Social Justice, Empowerment and Minorities, and the concerned persons of Rai Sikh Community, who had procured employment on the basis of Scheduled Caste Certificates, prior to 30.08.2007.
Three separate Civil Writ Petitions filed (i) Gurpreet Singh; (ii) Pawan Kumar; and (iii) Balbir Singh, all the persons belonging to Scheduled Caste, challenging notification issued by the Department of Social Justice Empowerment and Minorities, Govt. of Punjab, on 15th July 2021, clarifying that Scheduled Caste certificates obtained by Rai Sikhs prior to 30th August, 2007, are also valid, the High Court Bench, comprising Justice Lisa Gill today issued notices for 16th December, 2021 to the Secretary, and Director of the said Department as well as to the concerned private respondents, who belong to Rai Sikh Community, who had got admission in educational courses and / or were recruited in Govt. service, on the basis of SC Certificates procured by them from the competent authority, prior to 30th. August, 2007.
The petitioners in aforesaid three cases who belong to Scheduled Caste category had contended that prior to 30.08.2007, the Rai Sikh Caste was included in the Backward Class, and from the said date i.e. 30.08.2007, vide Presidential notification dated 30.08.2007, the Rai Sikh Caste was included in the Scheduled Caste Category. However, a substantial number of persons belonging to Rai Sikh caste, obtained job in Punjab Government on the basis of SC Certificates procured by them prior to 30.08.2007, and were facing departmental inquiries for procurement and use of false / in-genuine SC Certificates.
The Counsel for the petitioners argued that the State of Punjab has now issued a letter to all the Deputy Commissioners in the State of Punjab on 15.07.2021, clarifying therein that the persons belonging to Rai Sikh caste irrespective of the date of birth, had now become Scheduled Caste, and that in view of the aforesaid, those persons of Rai Sikh Caste, who had got Scheduled Caste Certificate issued prior to 30.08.2007, are also now Scheduled Caste on the basis of their birth.