June 11, 2018
Case name: Kum. Pallavi v. The State of Maharashtra & Ors.
Date of Judgment: June 06, 2018
In this recent case, the Division Bench of High Court of Bombay took a strong note of spurt in cases where persons belonging to scheduled tribe or caste showing that persons from general caste or OBCs are trying to secure false certificates of Scheduled Caste or Scheduled Tribe for better opportunities of employment.
While condemning the aforesaid prevalent practice, the High Court of Bombay has remarked that the Scrutiny Committee should be very diligent and follow proper procedure while verifying castes certificate.
The Court noted that claimants while claiming to belonging to scheduled caste/tribe are bound to disclose the entire genealogical tree known to them and not partial genealogy trees. In view of such prevailing practices, the Bombay High Court observed as under:
- The Scrutiny Committee in view of such discrepancies, have held that the Scrutiny Committee should insist for a complete genealogical tree with declaration that no further relatives of the same genealogy are known to the claimant.
- Once such complete genealogical tree is filed, it is subject to verification by the Vigilance Officer and it shall not be permitted for the claimant to subsequently come with a new plan that certain persons not shown in the genealogical tree are their paternal relatives and they have obtained their validity certificates.
- That the claimants can claim the benefits of validity certificates issued in the name of only those persons as their paternal relatives in the genealogical tree which has been subjected to verification by the Vigilance Commission and is found to be correct by the Vigilance Officer.
- The High Court while elucidating on the issue also made reference to Supreme Court’s judgment in the case of Kumari Madhuri Patil and another Versus Addl. Commissioner, Tribal Development & Ors., wherein it was emphasized that each claimant has to stand on his/her own legs and merely because one of the family member’s caste claim has been verified would not by itself be the foundation of candidate’s claim.
- With reference to validity of certificates granted in favour of close relatives of the claimant, the High Court relied on Supreme Court’s judgment in the case of Monika Thakur v. The State of Maharashtra & Ors. to opine that the validity of certificates granted in favour of close relatives of the Petitioner though significant shall not be considered in cases:
- When vital evidence has been ignored.
- When fraud is practiced.
- When the procedure provided has not been followed.
- The High Court of Bombay has also issued a slew of direction for Vigilance Officer determining whether the genealogy submitted by the claimant is false or genuine:
- School record and transfer certificate issued in case of members of the genealogical tree.
- Birth date register maintained by Municipal Council and Gram Panchayat and the person giving the information of such entries
- The old 7/12 extract and mutation extract showing lands held by the ancestral family. The Copies of the ration card.
- Record of census disclosing the name of caste, if any. Judgments, plaints, written statement, FIR and other documents in old litigations like partition suits.
- Registration of marriages and copies of marriage invitation card if available.
- Allotment of agriculture land to the members of ST, if any.
- The caste shown in the Kotwal Book.
- The sale transactions if those disclose the caste/tribe of the relatives shown in genealogical tree.
- Service record of relatives.
The High Court in the case also emphasized on evolving a system of computerized data of all relevant documents to ensure proper scrutiny of caste and tribe claims.
The entire case can be accessed here.
 AIR 1995 SC 94
 WP No. 10123 of 2010