April 26: The Centre has allowed the IIMs to go ahead with admissions in the non-OBC category, persuading allies to drop their opposition to the phased process.
The OBC list will be released if the Supreme Court vacates a stay on May 8. However, the allies have left open the possibility of legislative action if the court scraps the OBC quota.
The human resource development ministry is expected to send a directive to the IIMs soon lifting the admission freeze. The IIMs will release the general category and SC/ST lists as soon as the directive reaches them.
The IIM Calcutta admissions chairman, Asish Bhattacharyya, said the institute can make public its results “within an hour” of the directive.
“This is just what we wanted. We are happy,” IIM Ahmedabad director Bakul Dholakia said over phone from Egypt.
The breakthrough came after Arjun Singh met UPA allies and the Left. “We decided that this cannot be turned into a fight between reserved versus non-reserved students,” CPM leader Sitaram Yechury said.
According to the formula adopted, the IIMs will stick to last year’s number of seats.
Asked what the response would be if the court turns down the OBC quota, Yechury said: “We have told the government that they must keep their options open. We have to go back to Parliament in case our plea is rejected.”
Sources said the allies have discussed the possibility of seeking a presidential reference to a hearing by a full bench of the Supreme Court.
“The Constitution will have to be amended to clearly define and demarcate the powers of the executive, legislature and the judiciary,” Yechury said.