STATE TIMES NEWS
SRINAGAR: Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey of J&K High Court while dismissing petition challenging cancellation of Pos and Banking Assistants, directed J&K Bank to proceed ahead with fresh selection process initiated in terms of impugned advertisement notice.The petitioners stated to have offered their candidature for post of Probationary officers and Banking Associates sought to be filled up by respondents in terms of Notification no. HRD-Rectt-2018-1564 dated October 6, 2018 and subsequently participated in the selection process. Before the selection list could be issued the respondents issued a notice dated 15th April, 2020, cancelling whole selection process. Subsequent thereto, an advertisement notice ref no. JKB/HR-Rectt-2020-27 & 28 dated June 1, 2020 was issued by respondent Bank inviting applications from the desirous candidates for posts of Probationary Officers and Banking Associates.The petitioners, aggrieved of Notice dated 15th April, 2020, cancelling the selection process and of advertisement notice were seeking its quashment inter alia that no reasons have been disclosed by Bank while issuing the impugned notice dated 15th April, 2020, cancelling selection process conducted for posts of Probationary Officers and Banking Associates and failure of respondents to give reasons in support of its decision amounts to denial of justice; that agency which conducted online examination in question has a reputed track record; therefore, the cancellation of process does not appear to be bonafide and it being so the impugned decision of cancelling selection process is arbitrary and illegal, therefore deserves to be declared as ultra-vires of the Constitution; that a limited right of fair consideration is available to a candidate who participates in the selection process which cannot be taken away by arbitrary means and unreasonably.Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey after hearing Jahangir Iqbal Ganai, Sr Adv with Humaira Shafi, Advocate for petitioners whereas D C Raina, Advocate General with Sajjad Ashraf, G A and Sunil Sethi, Sr Advocate with Adv Navyug Sethi for the respondents, observed that petitioners have taken a positive stand in their writ petitions which was reiterated by their senior counsel while making submissions, that no vested right of selection/ appointment is created in favour of petitioners merely because they participated in selection process, however, they question cancellation on the ground that the infirmities or irregularities, if any, in the selection process in question could have been set right by some other administrative means, therefore, the cancellation done was unreasonably.Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey observed that as far as the authority of the respondents to cancel the selection process is concerned, this aspect also stands literally admitted by the petitioners that the respondents had the authority to cancel it but their contention is that it was unwarranted as the defects, if any in the selection process, could have been cured by some other administrative means. The stand of the respondents that the recruitment process in question has gone wrong from its very inception is substantiated by the records. The Bank had gone wrong when it construed the district-wise requirement as district-wise recruitment. It further went on to frame a merit list district-wise, meaning thereby that the conception of one unit policy which is followed in the respondent Bank has been flouted with impunity in the said recruitment process. This irregularity might have had the scope of correction but the respondent Bank had gone further wrong in not offering reservation in the whole process which certainly was incurable, therefore, the Bank was left with no option but to initiate a process ab-initio. Furthermore, it needs no reiteration that since selection process had not been completed; the petitioners have no right to dispute decision of the respondents to go for a denovo exercise. It is beaten law of the land that a job aspirant does not have any right to seek appointment even if his name figures in the select list. In the present case, however, the selection process had not even culminated; therefore, the challenge laid to the impugned action of the respondents is impermissible.The question as to whether cancellation had reasonableness attached with it, also finds its answer in the above paragraph wherein the court enumerated the whole situation in which the process came to be cancelled. The impugned cancellation, therefore, is held to have had the reasonableness attached with it and it was not arbitrary. With these observations, High Court held the petitions are with any merit and dismissed petition and directed the respondents shall proceed ahead with the fresh selection process initiated in terms of the impugned advertisement notice.
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