J&K HC Quashes Selection Of 64 Drug Inspectors

In an important decision, the Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh High Court has cancelled the selection list of the recruitment process for 64 posts of Drug Inspectors done twelve years ago. After revoking the selection list, JKSSB ordered the formation of a new selection committee and started the interview process afresh. Previously selected candidates were serving in the department for many years.

A division bench of Chief Justice Pankaj Mittal and Justice Vinod Chatterjee Kaul in the High Court also overturned the decision of the single bench of the High Court. The single bench had ordered to appoint the candidates who filed the petition and the continuation of the services of the selected candidates. It was also ordered that if there are no posts for the candidates of the petitioner side, then the selection process should be done afresh.

The High Court observed that on May 5, 2008, JKSSB issued an advertisement for the posts and sought applications. On September 8 2009, JKSSB released the list of selected candidates for 64 seats. On December 18, 2015, a single bench of the High Court on the challenge petition in the court said that the chosen services should be continued. Accordingly, the eligible candidates who filed the petition in the court should also be appointed.

In case of the non-availability of posts for these applicants, JKSSB will have to reject the entire list. The Division Bench of the High Court said that after going through the selection process, it is found that there is no fair and transparent basis for appointing the selected candidates. This is a case of arbitrary appointments, which are not partially but wholly rejected. Moreover, transparency has been compromised on other aspects, including the marks awarded in the interview to the selected candidates. Therefore, leaving the entire list, JKSSB is ordered to interview by forming a new selection committee.

The court said that the services of an employee could not be continued if he is appointed without an Aadhaar merely because he has been in service for many years. It was argued in this case that the selected candidates are serving for seven years.