New Delhi, May 18: The Patna High Court’s ruling temporarily suspending the caste-based census in the state was not overturned by the Supreme Court on Thursday.
The Bihar government’s claim that the case is still pending before the high court was taken note of by the bench.
“Who is hosting the data? We will be looking at the nature of the exercise, whether it is survey or census,” the Supreme Court ruled.
The Patna High Court’s ruling regarding the caste-based census in Bihar was challenged by the Bihar government in a Supreme Court petition on May 11.
The state government claimed that the stay would negatively impact the entire exercise in an appeal that it filed with the Supreme Court in response to the high court’s order of May 4.
On May 9, the Patna High Court denied the Bihar government’s demand for an early hearing on its request for an interim stay of the state’s caste-based survey. The hearing was scheduled for July 3 by the high court, which also made it clear that the stay would be in place until then.
On May 9, the Patna High Court denied the Bihar government’s petition for an early hearing of its interim stay on the state’s caste-based survey. The hearing was scheduled for July 3 by the high court, which also made it clear that the stay would be in place until then.
In its special leave petition before the Supreme Court, the Bihar government said, “Stay on the caste survey, which is on the verge of completion, would cause irreparable loss to the state and would adversely affect the entire exercise.”
“The state has already completed more than 80 per cent of the survey work. In some districts, less than 10 per cent of work is pending. The entire machinery is at ground level. There shall be no harm in completing the exercise subject to final adjudication of the dispute,” the plea said, adding that apart from other provisions, articles 15 and 16 of the constitution mandate the gathering of caste-based data.
The time gap to complete the survey would adversely affect the exercise since this would not be contemporaneous data,” the state government said.
From January 7 to January 21, Bihar’s first round of the caste survey was performed. Originally scheduled to last until May 15, the second round began on April 15.