Utt HC | High Court not to ordinarily permit a belated resort to extraordinary remedy under writ jurisdiction as it might cause public inconvenience and new injustices

Uttaranchal High Court: A Division Bench of Ramesh Ranganathan, CJ and N.S. Dhanik, J. entertained a writ petition which sought mandamus against respondents and to direct them to re-fix the last cut-off marks for general candidates; to prepare the selected list as per the respective categories; and to appoint petitioner as per his merit in the general category, the exam was conducted in 2015 i.e. four years ago.

The learned counsel for the petitioner, Tapan Singh submitted that, the petitioner applied for the post of Lecturer (Electronics), he succeeded in the screening test and secured qualifying marks in interview, but the list declared by the respondent did not reflect his name. He further submitted that several other candidates who were selected under various reserved categories were initially considered under general category but the respondent by unfair means had given the appointment to them. It was further contended that the petitioner’s grievance was that the candidates who were selected in the screening test under the reserved categories, were treated as in General category after the process of interview was completed; they were appointed in General category posts; consequently, he was deprived of being appointed to the post of Lecturer under the General category; the aforesaid individuals ought to have been selected and appointed in their respective reserved categories; it was pleaded that such candidates were not entitled to be appointed; and the vacancy, caused as a result, in the General category should be filled up with the petitioner, who belonged to the General category only.

B.D. Kandpal, learned counsel for the respondent- State argued that a large number of applications were received from applicants to be considered for selection and appointment to various posts, there was a proper procedure for the selection and various people are involved hence, negating the chances of fraud, the marks obtained by them in the screening test has no relevance thereafter; the entire selection process, thereafter, was based only on the marks secured by candidates in the interview; candidates, who are found meritorious in the interview, are alone selected and appointed to the posts. The various candidates were appointed as per the merit list and there is no misappropriation of seats for general or reserved category. The meritorious one’s were allotted under general category and likewise.

The Court did not pay much attention to the merits and facts of the case relied on State of M.P v. Nandlal Jaiswal, (1986) 4 SCC 566, where the Supreme Court held that Now, it is well settled that the power of the High Court to issue an appropriate writ under Article 226 of the Constitution is discretionary and the High Court in the exercise of its discretion does not ordinarily assist the tardy and the indolent of the acquiescent and the lethargic. If there is inordinate delay on the part of the petitioner in filing a writ petition and such delay is not satisfactorily explained, the High Court may decline to intervene and grant relief in the exercise of its writ jurisdiction. Hence, the petition was duly dismissed by the Court, as it does not ordinarily permit a belated resort to the extraordinary remedy under the writ jurisdiction because it is likely to cause confusion and public inconvenience and bring in its train new injustices.[Suneel Singh Bhandari v. State of Uttrakhand, 2019 SCC OnLine Utt 430, decided on 09-05-2019]

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