July 13, 2021 8:12:19 am
More than 1,500 teachers, whose appointment to secondary schools in 11 non-scheduled districts across Jharkhand was obstructed due to legal hurdles, have been given relief by the Supreme Court.
The appointment process, advertised in 2016, ran into trouble after several petitions raised questions citing a district-based domicile quota in vacancies in 13 scheduled districts. The High Court stayed the appointment and later a three-member High Court bench on September 13 last year ordered to quash the government advertisement in scheduled areas, stating that it would deprive the candidates of other districts. However, the bench had emphasised that “the selection process was never stayed by the court in the non-scheduled districts”.
But despite the order, the Department of Personnel and Administrative Reforms, in its order on February 18, said that after getting advised by Advocate General’s Office, the Jharkhand government had decided to stop the appointment process.
Hearing a Special Leave Petition arising out of the HC order, the Supreme Court said “there was no reservation therein for locals/domicile of non-scheduled districts” and “the subject matter…relates to appointments from the scheduled districts of Jharkhand”.
A bench of Justices Navin Sinha and R Subhash Reddy noted this in an order on July 9.
The job candidates had gone to the HC and later to the Supreme Court with 350 of them pooling in money from their savings — to the tune of Rs 10 lakh — to fight the case.
Kumar Abhijit, one of the petitioners who applied for the history teacher’s post, said, “Despite the HC clearly stating their order does not affect the appointment process in non-scheduled districts, the Jharkhand government arbitrarily stopped the remaining appointments… We have been a victim of the state’s high-handedness.”
Advocate General Rajeev Ranjan did not respond to calls.
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