The Supreme Court on Friday refused to urgently hear a plea praying that the recently enacted law requiring reservation of 33 percent of seats for women in parliament and State legislative assemblies be implemented before the 2024 Indian general elections [Dr Jaya Thakur vs Union of India and Ors.]..A bench of Justices Sanjiv Khanna and SVN Bhatti remarked that the top court could not step into the legislative domain by issuing such directions.."We will be virtually legislating then (if we allow the prayers) ... It will be very difficult for us to do that. This is a good step taken, which is a very good step. There are a lot of issues (in the petition). Seats will have to be reserved first, quotas are always fixed on that basis. This is implemented by the rules," Justice Khanna orally observed..The bench was hearing a petition filed by Indian National Congress (INC) leader Dr. Jaya Thakur.Dr. Thakur moved the Court seeking direction for the enforcement of the recently notified Constitutional Amendment Act, which provides for women's reservation in the legislature.The plea said that the same should be done immediately without waiting for the conduct of census or delimitation exercise.The Women's Reservation Bill was passed by the Lok Sabha on September 20, and by the Rajya Sabha on September 21, before it received the President's assent on September 28.The Act adds Article 334A to the Constitution of India. The new Article states that reservation for women in Lok Sabha and State legislative assemblies will come into effect only after a delimitation exercise is carried out. This process will take place following the results of the first census conducted after the amendment.Dr. Thakur's plea, however, calls for women's reservations to be carried out without waiting to complete such a delimitation exercise.To this end, the plea seeks the declaration of the words "after an exercise of delimitation is undertaken for this purpose after the relevant figures for the first census" in Article 334A as void ab initio.According to the petition, a Constitutional amendment cannot be stayed for an uncertain period.The plea added that there is always a presumption regarding the constitutional validity of an enactment. As such, unless the amendment and enactment are declared ultra vires the Constitution, their effect and operation cannot be stayed, Dr. Thakur submitted.The census, which is usually conducted once every 10 years, was earlier scheduled for 2021. However, it was delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic and is now expected to take place in 2024.Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) President JP Nadda had earlier stated the exercises of census and delimitation were necessary to decide which seats are to be reserved for women..Senior Advocate Vikas Singh appeared for Dr. Jaya Thakur and argued that the Amendment Act does not explicitly call for a census and delimitation. Therefore, the prayers of the petitioner could be allowed, he contended. The top court, however, deferred the matter till November 22 and tagged it along with another pending plea on the subject filed by the National Federation of Indian Women.