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Employer can refuse appointment to those in select list on valid ground: SC

"The mere inclusion in the select list does not give an indefeasible right to a candidate.", a bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan and M R Shah said in its judgement.

Supreme Court | employers | judicial appointments

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 


Employer has a right to refuse appointment to a candidate included in select list on valid ground and person who occupy judicial service of the state are expected to have impeccable character and conduct, the Tuesday said.

The apex court made the observation while dismissing an appeal challenging the verdict of the Madhya Pradesh High Court which had rejected a plea filed by a man who had sought quashing of orders by which he was held to be not suitable for being appointed to the post of District Judge (entry level).

The mere inclusion in the select list does not give an indefeasible right to a candidate. The employer has right to refuse appointment to the candidate included in the select list on any valid ground. The persons who occupy judicial service of the state are persons who are expected to have impeccable character and conduct, a bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan and M R Shah said in its judgement.

The Madhya Pradesh High Court had issued an advertisement in March 2017 inviting applications for recruitment to the post of district judge (entry level) in the cadre of higher judicial service by direct recruitment from amongst eligible advocates.

The petitioner had submitted online application in pursuance to the advertisement and after being declared successful in the main examination, he was called for interview.

His name was included in the provisional select and waiting list and he had received a communication in April 2018 from the law and legislative department informing that he has been selected for the post.

Later, in July 2018, he was informed that in his attestation form a criminal case is shown to be lodged against him and around two months later, an order was issued by the law and legislative department declaring him to be ineligible and directing for deletion of his name from the select list.

Later, a Gazette notification deleting his name from the main select list was also issued.

The man thereafter challenged the order and the Gazette notification in the high court.

Later, he was acquitted of the charge framed against him in the criminal case which was lodged on the basis of a complaint filed by his wife.

The apex court noted in its verdict that on the date when the examination-cum-section and appointment committee had declared him to be not suitable, the criminal case against him was pending.

The mere fact that subsequently after more than a year when the person whose candidature has been cancelled has been acquitted cannot be a ground to turn the clock backward, the bench said.

The bench referred to an earlier verdict of the apex court in which it was observed that a candidate wishing to join the police force must be a person having impeccable character and integrity.

The above observations apply with greater force to the judicial service, it noted.

We, thus, are of the view that the high court did not commit any error in dismissing the writ petition. The appellant was not entitled for any relief in the writ petition, it said while refusing to interfere with the high court verdict delivered this January.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: Tue, October 13 2020. 21:50 IST