Bombay High Court: In a case filed by a student (‘petitioner’) seeking directions to State (‘respondent’) to conduct the Maharashtra Public Service Commission examination in English as well as Marathi language, a Division bench of S.V. Gangapurwala and R.N. Laddha, JJ. directed the respondents to ensure that the next examination to be held for Public Prosecutors must be conducted in English as well as Marathi language in line with the implementation of the policy of State Government of promoting the language of State i.e. Marathi .
Counsel for the petitioner submitted that the petitioner has studied only in Marathi language. The proceedings before the Courts of Judicial Magistrate First Class (‘JMFC’) and Civil Judge Junior Division (‘CJJD’) are normally conducted in Marathi language. Further, as Marathi language is a local language, it is incumbent upon the respondent 1 to conduct the examination in English as well as Marathi language. Even the question papers are to be in both Marathi and English language. The MPSC holds the exam for the selection of the JMFC and for the said exam also the question papers are in Marathi as well as English language.
Placing reliance on Prashant P. Giri v. State of Maharashtra, (2010) 5 Mah LJ 206, the Court noted that in this case, it was observed that at least from the next examination for selection of the subordinate Judicial Officers in the State of Maharashtra, the facility be made available for answering the question paper in Marathi language. Twelve years have passed by and it cannot be comprehended that even after 12 years, the Government is still searching for the examiners to assess the answer papers in Marathi language.
The Court remarked “the Government ought to have been serious in implementing the said judgments in its letter and spirit. The Government cannot say that for the examination of the JMFC facility can be provided for answering in Marathi language and for the examination of Public Prosecutor the same facility would not be provided.”
The Court opined that as the examinations now are scheduled on 11-09-2022 and there are about 7700 candidates, and no other candidate has raised objection for answering the question paper in Marathi language, thus the prayer cannot be granted for the present examination.
However, the Court held that the respondents shall ensure that the next examination to be held for Public Prosecutors shall be conducted in English as well as Marathi language.
[Pratap Prakash Jadhav v. State of Maharashtra, 2022 SCC OnLine Bom 2232, decided on 07-09-2022]
Advocates who appeared in this case :
Mr. Alankar Kirpekar a/w Sushmit Phatale, Mr. Nikhil Adkine, Dynaesh Patil and Mr. Aditya Raktade i/by Metanshu R. Purandare. Mrs. M.P. Thakur, AGP for the State.
*Arunima Bose, Editorial Assistant has put this report together.