THE DELHI High Court has quashed advertisements issued by Jawaharlal Nehru University in August 2019 with respect to appointments for two posts – of a professor and an associate professor – after ruling that the university has failed to prove that reservation rosters were correctly recast by it.
The order has been passed in a petition filed by two assistant professors of the university who challenged the advertisements contending that the post of associate professor meant for SC candidate at the Centre for Informal Sector & Labour Studies, School of Social Sciences, has been converted into an ST post and the post of professor meant for ST candidate at the Centre for Inner Asian Studies (Tibetan & Himalayan Studies), School of International Studies has been converted into an unreserved post. A division bench of the High Court in an interim order had earlier restrained the university from making any appointments to the two posts in question.
“Mere statements and denials that there has been no reservation or exchange of reservation points would not be enough for the University to rebut the data/tables placed on record by the petitioners,” Justice Jyoti Singh said in the judgement, adding the reservation rosters have to be post-based and exchange of reservation points is permissible only in very exceptional cases and that too by following a very rigorous process.
The single-bench in the final order asked the university to revisit and re-examine the issue within three months in accordance with the post-based reservation system and further said it would be open for it to initiate a fresh recruitment process and advertise the two posts after the exercise is completed.
The petitioner had also argued that there has been a drastic reduction in the number of teaching posts or vacancies reserved for SCs and STs at JNU. It was also argued that the number of vacancies advertised are far below the prescribed percentage of reservation and the law laid down by the apex court.