As the Supreme Court reopens on Monday after the winter vacation, several important constitutional matters, including petitions against the nullification of Article 370, the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), EWS quota and the minority status of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU), await adjudication.

Around 20 petitions challenging 10% quota to EWS of general category in employment and education awaiting adjudication.

The SC is yet to examine the correctness of a 2006 judgment of Allahabad High Court by which the minority tag to the AMU was taken away. The top court had, on August 28, 2019, referred petitions challenging Presidential Orders nullifying Article 370 of the Constitution and bifurcation of Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories to a five-judge Constitution Bench.

The Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019, which divided the state into two UTs — Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh — has already been acted upon following a gazette notification on October 31, 2019.

“The Supreme Court can always turn the clock back,” the top court had said on October 1, 2020. However, the matter has not been taken up for hearing despite some of the petitioners filing applications seeking urgent hearing.

Similarly, there are around 145 petitions challenging the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), 2019, pending in the top court which had on January 22 refused to stay its operation. In January 2020, the top court had said it would refer the issue to a five-judge Constitution Bench but the matter hasn’t been taken up for hearing.

Around 20 petitions challenging the Constitution (103rd Amendment) Act, 2019, granting 10 per cent reservation to EWS of general category in public employment and education, including private educational institutions, are also awaiting adjudication by a Constitution Bench. As on October 1, 2021, there were 421 Constitution Bench matters pending in the Supreme Court. There were 271 five-judge Bench matters, 15 seven-judge Bench matters and 135 nine-judge Bench matters. Of the 421 Constitution Bench cases, 49 were “main matters”, while the rest 372 were “connected matters”.