The Supreme Court on Wednesday issued notice on a plea seeking direction to all the 23 IITs to follow the reservation policy in the admission in the research degree programmes and recruitment of faculty.

A bench headed by Justice L.N. Rao and comprising Justices B.R. Gavai and B.V. Nagarathna, after hearing arguments in the matter, issued notice to Centre and all the IITs.

The plea, filed by Sachchida Nand Pandey through Advocate Ashwani Kumar Dubey, said the IITs are not following a transparent processes for recruiting the faculty members which "opens up the window for non-deserving and useless candidates to enter into the IITs through connection that increased the chances of corruption, favouritism and discrimination".

It contended that the policy that provides the reservation to socially marginalised communities belonging to the SC (15 per cent), ST (7.5 per cent), and OBC (27 per cent) categories is not being followed by the IITs.

"It is submitted that the process of taking admissions in the Research Programme and appointment of faculty members by the Respondent No 2-24 (IITs) are completely unconstitutional, illegal and arbitrary. The Respondents 2-24 are not following the guidelines of reservation as per the constitutional mandate," said the plea.

It cited that on June 9, 2008, the Central government had written to IIT Directors (Kharagpur, Madras, Bombay, Kanpur, Roorkee, and Guwahati) to implement the reservation for SC, ST, and OBC categories in the requirement to a teaching post at assistant professor level in science and technology, and at all levels (assistant, associate and professor) in humanities and management departments.

"Issue a writ of mandamus or any other writ, order or direction against the respondents (Centre and 23 IITs) thereby directing the respondents to follow the reservations policy in the admission in research degree programs and recruitment of faculty in the IITs," the plea sought.