Punjab and Haryana High Court has stayed the Haryana State Employment of Local Candidates Act, 2020 which provides 75 percent reservation for the domiciles of Haryana in private sector jobs.
Several petitions have been admitted before the High Court bench of Justice Ajay Tewari and Justice Pankaj Jain. The petitions have challenged the law which grants 75 percent reservation for local youth in private sector jobs with monthly salary of less than ₹30,000 from January 15, 2022.
The law exempted short-term work and a host of primary services a few days later.
The Haryana State Employment of Local Candidates Act, 2020 was championed by Deputy Chief Minister Dushyant Chautala, a Jannayak Janata Party leader. It was one of the party’s pre-poll promises.
The petitioners include Faridabad Industries Association, the IMT Industrial Association and Gurgaon Industrial Association.
“The Act purports to effectively provide for reservation in private employment and represents an unprecedented intrusion by the government into the fundamental rights of private employers to carry out their business and trade, as provided under Article 19 and the restrictions being places upon such a right are not reasonable but are arbitrary, capricious, excessive and uncalled for,” the plea reads.
The petitioners also contended that Law fails to take into account practical commercial concerns and avers that the domicile criteria provided in the Act goes on to violate the mandate of Article 16 (2) of the Constitution which provides that no citizen shall be ineligible for or discriminated against in respect of employment on the ground only of religion, race, caste, sex, descent, place of birth, residence or any of them.
The plea also argued that the Act is contrary to the very idea of common citizenship for the Union of India and that it fails to uphold the federal structure of the Union of India which is part of the basic structure of the Constitution of India.
Gurgaon Industrial Association has contended that this Act was against the provisions of the Constitution and the principle of meritocracy.