Over 11,000 employees are at the risk of losing their jobs in Maharashtra after it was discovered that they had secured employment by forging caste certificates.

The Supreme Court in a ruling last year had sought the dismissal of those who used fake certificates to get jobs.

The Maharashtra government is reportedly mulling the next step cautiously because the sacking of such a high number of employees will create a political problem for the government.

According to the Times of India, 11,700 employees got employment under the Scheduled Tribes (ST) quota by using fake caste certificates.

The report says that many of them have been working for the government for the over two decades, some of them having reached the level of deputy secretaries.

The apex court had on 6 July 2017 also sought punishment for those who duped the government in such a manner.

A bench of then Chief Justice JS Khehar and Justice DY Chandrachud had set aside a Bombay High Court judgement granting protection and continuation of jobs to those who have spent sufficient time in the job but with fake certificates.

The verdict came on a batch of petitions including the one filed by the Maharashtra government against the Bombay High Court judgement.

The Supreme Court, however, said that the findings of its verdict would not be made applicable with retrospective effect and would be applied now onwards.

The dilemma for Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis comes in the backdrop of Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley declaring in his Budget Speech that job generation has been one of the most important tasks for the ruling BJP government at the Centre.

Calling employment generation a priority for the Modi government, Jaitley announced a slew of allocations to key labour-intensive sectors such as MSME, textile and leather besides extra spending in infrastructure, tax sops for small industries and reduction in statutory employees’ provident fund contributions by new female employees.