In the case, a particular R R Inamdar was promoted to a solitary post of Lecturer of English. The Karnataka allowed a writ petition filed by his senior and stated that in view of the circumstances and the precedent of State of Karnataka v K Govindappa, the solitary post of a Lecturer could not be reserved. The case moved on to the Supreme Court where a bench of Justice DY Chandrachud and Justice Ajay Rastogi upheld the verdict of th Karnataka HC in this matter and also observed that Constitution Bench in the Post Graduate institute of Medical Education and Research v Faculty Association had clearly stated that when it came to solitary posts, reservation was not allowed.
In the case of K Govindappa, the SC had held that “In order to apply the rule of reservation within a cadre, there has to be a plurality of posts. Since there is no scope of interchangeability of posts in the different disciplines, each single post in a particular discipline had to be treated as a single post.”
Regarding the present case, the apex court while upholding the judgement of the Karnataka HC stated “The principle which has been enunciated by this Court is that there can be no reservation of a solitary post and that in order to apply the rule of reservation within a cadre, there must be a plurality of posts. Where there is no interchangeability of the posts in different disciplines, each single post in a particular discipline has to be treated as a single post for the purpose of reservation within the meaning of Article 16(4) of the Constitution. If this principle were not to be followed, reservation would be in breach of the ceiling governed by the decisions of this Court. A circular, of the nature that has been issued by the State of Karnataka, cannot take away the binding effect of the decisions of this Court interpreting the policy of reservation in the context of Article 16(4).”