The Allahabad High Court on Thursday said recruitment for technical assistants in Uttar Pradesh Public Service Commission’s (UPPSC) Agricultural Services (class III) cadre will be subject to the outcome of a petition that has challenged the manner in which seats reserved for OBCs were increased three fold.
The court also asked UPPSC, which conducted the examinations last year, and the state government to file replies within a month.
The petition, filed by Manish Upadhyaya and 17 others, came up for hearing before a division bench of Justices V K Shukla and Yashwant Verma. The petitioners have sought declaration of the results of the recruitment examination as per the original advertisement of 2013.
While the original advertisement provided for 566 seats for OBCs — out of a total 6,628 seats — it was increased to 2,030 after results for the written examinations were declared. While general category seats were reduced from 3,616 to 2,515, SC seats were also slashed.
Agnihotri Kumar Tripathi, counsel for petitioners, said: “The court said the changes made in seat allocations ought to be explained by the UPPSC and the state government. One month’s time has been given to the respondents for the purpose. The court also said that the entire recruitment process will be subject to the outcome of this petition.”
UPPSC counsel Ajay Kumar could not be contacted despite repeated efforts.
The UPPSC had changed the seat allocation for the examinations — held on March 30, 2014 — and its results declared in September through a memorandum issued in October, last year. The final result, after the interview during which seat allocations were changed, was declared on May 21.
On Wednesday, when the matter had come up before a single judge bench, the UPPSC had pointed out that at least two other petitions had challenged the memorandum. The court had then referred the matter to a division bench.
The petitioners have sought quashing of the result declared on May 21, besides the memorandum. They have also sought redeclaration of the result on the basis of the original advertisement issued in 2013, in which 6,628 posts were advertised.
Among these, while 3,616 were reserved for general category, there were 2,211 for SCs. In the final result, the general seats were reduced to 2,515, while SC seats came down to 1,882. On the other hand, OBC seats went up from 566 to 2,030. The total number of posts remained the same.