HC directives in petition challenging KCS Paper


Jammu, May 24: In a petition seeking stay of KCS paper which is scheduled to be held on May 25, 2017, Justice Alok Aradhe of J&K High Court Jammu Wing after hearing Sr. Adv BS Salathia with Adv Sachin Gupta and Prem Sadotra for the petitioners, issued notice to the respondents and ordered that the examination in question shall be subject to the result of the writ petition.
Justice Alok Aradhe observed that Sr. Adv BS Salathia appearing for the petitioners submits that J&K Public Service Commission is holding an examination for recruitment to the post of Civil Judge (Junior Division/ Munsiffs). It is further submitted that 11 posts have been advertised and 1,700 applications have been received. Therefore, in view of Rule 11 of Jammu and Kashmir Public Services Commission (Conduct of Examinations) Rules, 2005, the respondent No.1-Commission is under an obligation to hold preliminary objective type test. It is further submitted that the most of the petitioners have appeared in the previous year's examination, however their results have not been declared so far and in order to bring in transparency in the process of examination, the PSC must hold the preliminary examination taking into account the fact that number of applications received by it are unduly large. It is further submitted that the object of holding the screening test is to eliminate unduly long number of persons who appear in the main examination. In support of aforesaid submissions and placed reliance on the decision of the Supreme Court in the case of Chatter Singh and ors. v. State of Rajasthan and ors.
On the other hand, Sr. Adv DC Raina for PSC has submitted that the Rule in question directory in nature and Srinagar wing of this Court in SWP No.2172/2015 by order dated 25.5.2016 has held that the Public Service Commission is duty bound to follow the mandate contained in J&K Civil Services (Judicial) Recruitment Rules, 1967 and any other mode adopted by including that of conducting of screening test is not in consonance with 1967 Rules and would be violative of Article 14 and 16 of the Constitution of India. It is submitted that advertisement notice was issued on 6.2.2017 and last date of application of submission form was 6.3.2017 and the examination is scheduled to be held tomorrowi.e. 25.5.2017 and the petitioners have approached this Court belatedly for which no explanation has been offered. Lastly, it is submitted that all arrangement for conducting the examinations have been made and therefore the conduct of the petitioners in any case disentitles them to discretionary relief at this point of time.
Justice Alok Aradhe after considering the submissions of both the sides observed that prima facie, in the opinion of this Court, the provisions of Rule 11 appear to be directory in nature. Even if all the candidates are allowed to appear in the main examination, it cannot be said that the Commission would not be able to select the best candidates.
The Commission is the examining body and it is for the Commission to decide the mode and method of conducting the examination. It is also pertinent to note that advertisement notice was issued for the posts in question on 6.2.2017 and last date of submission of application for was 6.3.2017.
The examination is scheduled to be held on 25.5.2017. All the arrangements for the examination in question including preparation of question papers, deployment of staff, fixation of centers, etc, have been made by the Public Service Commission. The petitioners have filed this writ petition before this Court today i.e. one day prior to the examination for which prima facie no explanation has been offered. The indolent conduct of the petitioners disentitles them to any discretionary relief for postponement of the examination in question. Besides that, in view of Division Bench decision of this Court 25.5.2016 passed in SWP No.2172/2015, no relief can be granted to the petitioners.
Court further made it clear that observations which have been made in this order have been made only for the purpose of deciding MP No.01/2017 and shall have no bearing on the merits of the case. Needless to state that the examination in question shall be subject to the result of the writ petition.JNF

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