OTHERS

Administrative Tribunal upholds recruitment of constables

Staff Reporter

BANGALORE: The Karnataka Administrative Tribunal (KAT) has upheld the recruitment to 861 posts of reserve police constables in the State.

A Division Bench of KAT comprising Chairman Justice A.V. Srinivasa Reddy and administrative member T.Y. Nayaz Ahmed said, "We would like to exhort the officials to incorporate a comprehensive eligibility criteria in the C and R Rules by a suitable amendment to avoid litigation in future."

The appointing authorities had invited applications on May 1, 2003, to fill up 861 posts of reserve police constables.

Over 2.5 lakh applications were received. Considering the task of selecting candidates, the department had issued guidelines containing criteria for selection in addition to the selection criteria in the Karnataka State Reserve Police Rules.

However, this was challenged on the ground that the authorities should have selected candidates on the basis of the recruitment rules and not on the basis of the guidelines.

The Karnataka Administrative Tribunal, however, concluded that there was no illegality in applying the selection criteria contained in the guidelines.

"The entire selection process was done on the basis of the objective criteria mentioned in the circular which have been uniformly followed," the KAT said.

Allowed

The KAT has partly allowed applications by candidates who were not selected as assistant masters in schools and quashed notifications of the authorities relaxing the age limit in different categories for the candidates.

The applicants, Mangala and others, said the Primary and Secondary Education Department, Karnataka State Education Examination Board, Commissioner of Public Instructions had issued notifications relaxing the maximum age limit of candidates under the general merit, Backward Class and Scheduled Caste categories.

They said the age limit for GM candidates for the post of assistant masters in arts and Kannada had been relaxed to 40 years, BC to 43 and SC to 45 years. They said was against the rules of recruitment.

Partly allowing their applications, a Division Bench comprising Justice Reddy and administrative member P. Kotalinganagoud directed the respondents not to disturb or displace those who had been selected and appointed in accordance with the rules (Rule 6 of Rule 77).Wherever violations of Rule 6 of Rule 77 occurred, the respondents were directed to give such candidates an opportunity of hearing before removing them.

The Bench directed the respondents to comply with the order within three months' time.

Relief

In another order, the KAT quashed and set aside initiation of disciplinary proceedings against K.B. Shivaramaiah, retired Deputy Director of Agriculture, and directed the Office of the Accountant General to release payment of Death-cum-Retirement Gratuity, which had been withheld. The Agriculture Department had on November 3, 1998, ordered a departmental inquiry against Mr. Shivaramaiah though he had retired two years earlier.

The inquiry was ordered after the department claimed that Mr. Shivaramaiah had committed some irregularities between 1993-94 and 1994-95.

A KAT Bench comprising Justice Reddy and administrative member P. Kotalinganagoud said the disciplinary authority had no jurisdiction and authority to have initiated such an inquiry.

It directed both the Agriculture Department and the Accountant General to grant within 90 days the relief due to the applicant.