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Ashish Bisht and Ors. Vs. State of Uttarakhand and Ors. - (High Court of Uttarakhand) (13 Oct 2020)

Cancellation of the written examination by the Selection Committee is an administrative decision and the Court should not ordinarily interfere



Petitioners have approached this Court praying to declare cancellation of entire selection for the post of Forest Guard in the absence of any material for forming an opinion that the selection is tainted, as arbitrary and illegal. Further, to issue a writ, order or direction in the nature of certiorari for quashing the order/notification issued by Respondent no. 4 as published in Hindi daily newspaper Amar Ujala dated 18th October, 2015 whereby entire selection has been cancelled without assigning any reason.

Learned counsel for the Petitioners contended that, there was no reason to cancel the entire selection. Cancellation of entire selection is an extreme step which can be ordered when there are cogent reasons therefore. Sufficiency of material for forming an opinion is a vital aspect which deserves consideration, but in the present case, there is no material whatsoever which may warrant such decision to cancel the selection. It is also contended that, the cancellation of the selection has a serious consequence for the petitioners which may result in the denial of the petitioners of a public employment to them forever.

The reason shown by the Respondents for cancelling the entire selection process is that, a complaint was received in the department alleging favouritism, unfair means, irregularities and malpractice in the process of selection. Record reveals that, in order to look into the genuineness of the complaint, enquiry was conducted. Said enquiry report was placed before the Committee which was duly considered and a decision was taken to cancel the written examination and to conduct written examination afresh. Foul play and unfair practice in the selection process cannot be ruled out and the cancellation of selection process cannot be said to unjustified or irrational.

Cancellation of the written examination by the Selection Committee is an administrative decision and the Court should not ordinarily interfere in the administrative decision. Furthermore, merely because the name of a candidate finds place in the select list, it would not give the candidate an indefeasible right to get an appointment.

As regards the jurisdiction of this Court under Article 226 of The Constitution of India, 1950 it is well settled principle in law that while exercising its powers of judicial review of any administrative action, Courts could not interfere with the administrative decision unless it suffers from the vice of illegality, irrationality or procedural impropriety.

A detailed enquiry was conducted and the answer sheets of the candidates were analysed. On the basis of sufficient proof, decision was taken to cancel the written examination. No ground for interference is made out. Petitions dismissed.


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