Weeks after the Supreme Court issued notice to the Delhi High Court administration over the controversial results of the 2014 Delhi Judicial Service (DJS) examination, the final result of selected candidates was published on Friday.
The notice released on the high court website names 15 candidates who have qualified for the DJS after the written exam and interviews.
The notice, however, includes the caveat that the selection and appointment of these candidates would be subject to the final decision of the Supreme Court.
The result of the written exam had created a controversy as only these 15 candidates had cleared the exam in the general category out of 659 candidates who had appeared for the main exam.
Records also showed that most of the other candidates barely managed to secure qualifying marks.
The DJS main exam was held in October last year and the result was declared on May 1.
Two of the 15 successful candidates are children of sitting HC judges — triggering allegations of bias.
The Centre for Public Interest Litigation (CPIL) had filed a plea before the Supreme Court to quash the results of the exam, alleging that “in a system where the High Court itself conducts examinations for selection of judicial officers, the possibility of conflict of interest or even allegation of bias cannot be ruled out”.
The writ challenged “the entire selection process and evaluation method adopted in the main (written) examination of the DJS, 2014 on grounds of being unreasonable, arbitrary and hence, in violation of Article 14”.
The Supreme Court bench of Justice Deepak Mishra and Justice P C Pant had on August 4 issued notice to the Registrar General of the Delhi High Court and had asked for a reply within three weeks.
However, it had declined the plea to issue a stay on the process.
According to the office of advocate Prashant Bhushan, who is representing CPIL, no reply has been filed by the high court so far.
The low pass percentage had also raised questions about the examination system, with Union Law Minister D V Sadananda Gowda asking the Delhi High Court chief justice to look into into accusations of “corruption, favouritism and nepotism” in the exam, conducted last year to fill 80 vacancies of district and sessions judges in Delhi.
The judges of the high court are involved in the preparation of question papers and the evaluation process.
Further, records showed that at least 65 sitting judicial officers from 11 states failed the exam, raising more questions over the evaluation process.
The list of the 65 unsuccessful judicial officers included 10 toppers who had held first or second rank in their states, as well as some who had cleared the judicial services exams in more than one state.