Case BriefsHigh Courts

Jammu and Kashmir High Court: Ali Mohammad Magrey, J. dismissed an appeal seeking directions for an appointment based on the subsequent waiting list when the selected candidate and the waitlisted candidate did not report.

The petitioner had offered his candidature for selection against the post of Accounts Assistant (ST category) by the Jammu and Kashmir Services Selection Board. The board, at the culmination of the selection process, forwarded the selection list containing the name of a lone candidate along with a waiting list, also containing the name of only one candidate. While the Department had yet to act on the selection list so forwarded to it by the Board, the petitioner made a representation addressed to the Directorate General, Accounts and Treasuries, bringing it to his notice that the selected candidate and the candidate figuring in the waiting list had tendered affidavits stating that they did not intend to join, and requesting him to direct the concerned authorities to process his case for appointment in accordance with norms as his candidature was on top in the subsequent waiting list. The request was rejected by the board as there were no rules for appointment of a candidate whose name is neither in the selection list and nor in the waiting list.

The petitioner feeling aggrieved by the above rule moved to the Court.

The issue for determination was: whether a candidate in a selection process securing a merit position below the waitlisted candidate can lay a claim for selection and appointment against the advertised post in the event the waitlisted candidate does not join against the post when the appointment is offered to him on account of non-joining of the selected candidate

Learned counsel for the petitioner Nissar Ahmad, submitted that since the petitioner’s name was there in the merit list after the waitlisted candidate, who did not join against the post, a right has accrued to him for being appointed against the post, but the respondents were unjustifiably denying him such right. It was also averred that the respondent had not shown any legal infirmity in denying appointment order in favour of the petitioner.

Learned counsels for the respondent D.C Raina and Mir Suhail, submitted before the Court that there was no rule to provide a supplementary waiting list and this position was clarified by the Board earlier in terms of communication. It was further stated in the reply that since the petitioner’s name did not figure either in the select list or the waiting list he had no right or locus to claim selection and appointment against the post. Furthermore, Rule 14 of Jammu and Kashmir Civil Service Decentralization and Recruitment Rules Act, 2010 (2010 Rules) which governs the selection process did not provide any provisions for making an appointment from the subsequent waiting lists. Thus, they requested the Court to dismiss the petition.

 The Court observed that since the 2010 Rules was the governing statute for the appointment to the concerned post and it did not provide any provision regarding making of a subsequent waiting list for the purpose of filling a seat, the same cannot be de done as it would be violating the provisions of the statute. The Court also relied on the Judgment given in the case of Prem Singh v. Haryana SEB, (1996) 4 SCC 319 in which Supreme Court very clearly observed that appointment on more than the advertised seats cannot be allowed as the governing provision laid no rules regarding that. The Court, thus, dismissed the petition.[Liyakat Hussain Baniya v. State of Jammu and Kashmir, 2019 SCC OnLine J&K 442, decided on 17-05-2019]

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Chhattisgarh High Court: Sanjay K. Agarwal, J. allowed a petition filed by a Sub-Registrar duly appointed under Section 6 of the Registration Act, 1908, who was implicated in an FIR registered for the commission of the offences punishable under Sections 420, 120-B and 424 read with Section 34 IPC, and quashed the FIR insofar the petitioner was concerned.

While discharging his duties as Sub-Registrar, the petitioner allowed a sale deed to be registered. The said transaction regarding the subject land off-shot into the registration of FIR against the vendors alleging that the subject land was transferred fraudulently. The petitioner was also implicated in the FIR as an accused. Soumitra Kesharwani, Advocate for the petitioner, submitted that the petitioner purely acted in the capacity of Sub-Registrar under the Registration Act, and therefore, the FIR against him should be quashed. Per contra, S.K. Agrawal, Government Advocate submitted that the prosecution against the petitioner was strictly in accordance with the law and no exception could be taken against it. While, Govind Dewangan, Advocate for the vendors supported the case of the petitioner.

The question for consideration before the High Court was — whether the petitioner/Sub-Registrar while registering the sale deed, was required to make roving enquiry upon the absolute title of the vendors qua subject land before making registration of sale deed in favour of vendees?

The Court perused Sections 34(3) and 35(1) of the Registration Act and noted: “A conjoint reading of Sections 34 and 35 shows that the scope of enquiry to be made by the registering officer is limited by the Act, restricted to the factum of execution and the identity of the person executing document, other than the levy of stamp duty, collection of registration charges and the completion of procedural formalities such as attestation, etc. There is nothing in this provision requiring the registering officer to make a roving enquiry about the title of the person with regard to the property which is being sold by the sale of deed. In my considered opinion, provisions contained in Section 34(1) do not cast any duty on the registering officer to make an enquiry qua title of the person transferring the subject land to the transferee/purchaser”.

After referring to a conspectus of authorities, the Court reached a conclusion that registration of sale deed allowed by the petitioner/Sub-Registrar while acting in the capacity of Sub-Registrar was in accordance with law. Therefore, it was held that the FIR insofar as the petitioner was concerned, was liable to be quashed and orders were made accordingly. [Daduram Sidar v. State of Chhattisgarh, 2019 SCC OnLine Chh 59, decided on 20-06-2019]

Appointments & TransfersNews

President is pleased to appoint Shri Justice Prashant Kumar, Judge of the Jharkhand High Court, to perform the duties of the office of Chief Justice of that High Court with effect from the date Shri Justice Dhirubhai Naranbhai Patel relinquishes the charge as Acting Chief Justice of the Jharkhand High Court consequent upon his appointment as Chief Justice of the Delhi High Court.


[Notification dt. 03-06-2019]

Ministry of Law and Justice

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Himachal Pradesh High Court: Chander Bhusan Barowalia, J. disposed of a petition considering the long litigation between the parties and gave directions to the competent authority.

In the present matter, the petitioner was an unemployed divorced lady who got selected for the post of Anganwadi worker but an appeal was made against the same by the Respondent 4 (who has been working on the post for more than 6 years) which even got accepted and the selection was set aside. Being aggrieved by the said order, the petitioner maintained appeal before the learned Divisional Commissioner, which was dismissed. Thereafter, the petitioner against the impugned order passed by the learned Divisional Commissioner maintained writ petition before the Court. Shalini Thakur, counsel for the petitioner argued that since the petitioner was a divorcee, therefore could not be treated as a member of the family for deciding the income of the family, which was taken as the basis for rejection of appointment. And since she is a single mother she had a son to look after all by herself. While the counsels for the respondents S.C. Sharma, Shiv Pal Manhans and P.K. Bhatti, Additional Advocate Generals with Raju Ram Rahi, Deputy Advocate General, contended that the petitioner has given her father’s address, which makes it evident that she was, in fact, residing with her father. And, that the Tehsildar also gave his findings establishing the same. Further, it was also alleged that the petitioner has remarried.

The Court after taking into consideration the long litigation between the parties, the situation of Respondent 4, who is working for more than 6 years on the post and the fact that the petitioner is a divorcee, who cannot be taken as a family member of her father for the purpose of income held and directed that for the interest of justice to be met the competent authority to consider the case of the petitioner for appointment as Anganwadi worker in and around the place of her residence in near future.[Heera Mani v. State of H.P., CWP No. 2772 of 2017, decided on 21-05-2019]

Appointments & TransfersNews

President is pleased to appoint Shri Justice Arup Kumar Goswami, senior-most Judge of the Gauhati High Court, to perform the duties of the office of Chief Justice of that High Court with effect from the date Shri Justice Ajjikuttira Somaiah Bopanna relinquishes the charge as Chief Justice of the Gauhati High Court consequent upon his appointment as a Judge of the Supreme Court of India.


[Notification dt. 22-05-2019]

Ministry of Law and Justice

Appointments & TransfersNews

President is pleased to appoint Shri Justice Dharam Chand Chaudhary, senior-most Judge of the Himachal Pradesh High Court, to perform the duties of the office of Chief Justice of that High Court with effect from the date Shri Justice Surya Kant relinquishes the charge as Chief Justice of the Himachal Pradesh High Court consequent upon his appointment as a Judge of the Supreme Court of India.


[Notification dt. 22-05-2019]

Ministry of Law and Justice

Appointments & TransfersNews

President is pleased to appoint Shri Justice Dhirubhai Naranbhai Patel, senior-most Judge of the Jharkhand High Court, to perform the duties of the office of Chief Justice of that High Court with effect from the date Shri Justice Aniruddha Bose relinquishes the charge as Chief Justice of the Jharkhand High Court consequent upon his appointment as a Judge of the Supreme Court of India.


[Notification dt. 22-05-2019]

Ministry of Law and Justice

Appointments & TransfersNews

President is pleased to appoint the following Judges as the Judges of the Supreme Court of India:

  • Justice Surya Kant, Chief Justice of the Himachal Pradesh High Court
  • Justice Bhushan Ramkrishna Gavai, Judge of the Bombay High Court
  • Justice Aniruddha Bose, Chief Justice of the Jharkhand High Court
  • Justice Ajjikuttira Somaiah Bopanna, Chief Justice of the Gauhati High Court

[Notification dt. 22-05-2019]

Ministry of Law and Justice

Hot Off The PressNews

Press Release

News Broadcasters Association (NBA) is pleased to announce the appointment of Justice A. K. Sikri, former Judge of the Supreme Court of India, as Chairperson of the News Broadcasting Standards Authority (NBSA). He will assume office on May 26, 2019.

NBSA is an independent body for self-regulation of 24×7 news channels, who are members of the NBA. Justice (Retd.) A. K. Sikri will succeed Justice (Retd.) R. V. Raveendran, who completes his term on May 25, 2019.

“In a statement, NBA President Rajat Sharma said that Justice Sikri’s vast experience in judiciary and an impeccable record as a judge would definitely strengthen self- regulation and NBSA. NBSA he said, is a self-regulatory body that implements the Code of Ethics and Broadcasting Standards and Guidelines for its Member news broadcasters. It is an independent body which is completely free from any interference from the NBA, Sharma added.”


[Press Release dt. 14-05-2019]

News Broadcasters Association

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Jammu and Kashmir High Court: Ali Mohammad Magrey, J. dismissed a Writ Petition on the basis of formal closure of ‘Rehbar-e-Taleem Teachers’ (ReT) scheme by Government’s order.

A writ petition was filed by the petitioner requesting the High Court to issue a Writ of Mandamus commanding the respondents to select the petitioner and appoint him on the basis of merit eligibility against the post of ReT in a newly opened school. Respondent 7, who was placed at Serial 1, got less percentage than the petitioner, who was placed at Serial 3, and also her certificate was not certified by the University Grant Commission. The petitioner raised an objection to that.

The learned senior Additional Advocate General, entering on the behalf of the respondents, submitted that the government has formally sanctioned the closure of the ReT scheme vide Government Order No. 919-Edu of 2018, and therefore no indefeasible right has accrued to the petitioner claiming her appointment.

The Court held that since the government had formally withdrawn the appointment under ReT scheme, the Court could not direct the respondent to appoint the petitioner against a non-existing position. The Court was of the view that when the Government had taken a policy decision canceling all the advertisements for engagement of ReT,  the Court could not direct appointment against such post.

Hence, the writ petition was held to be devoid of any merit and dismissed in limine. However, the petitioner was granted liberty to challenge the Government Order No. 919-Edu of 2018.[Rayees Qadir Padder v. State of J&K, 2019 SCC OnLine J&K 418, decided on 07-05-2019]

Appointments & TransfersNews

Justice A.A. Kureshi is the senior-most Judge from Gujarat High Court and at present is functioning, on transfer, in Bombay High Court. Having regard to all relevant factors, the Collegium is of the considered view that Justice A. A Kureshi is suitable in all respects for being appointed as Chief Justice of the Madhya Pradesh High Court. The Collegium resolves to recommend accordingly.


[Resolution dt. 10-05-2019]

Collegium Resolutions

Appointments & TransfersNews

Collegium comprising of Ranjan Gogoi, CJ and S.A. Bobde and N.V. Ramana, JJ. is of the considered view that Justice V. Ramasubramanian is suitable in all respects for being appointed as Chief Justice of the Himachal Pradesh High Court. The Collegium resolves to recommend accordingly.


[Resolution dt. 10-05-2019]

Collegium Resolutions

Appointments & TransfersNews

Justice D.N. Patel is a senior puisne Judge from Gujarat High Court and at present is functioning, on transfer, in Jharkhand High Court. Having regard to all relevant factors, the Collegium is of the considered view that Justice D.N. Patel is suitable in all respects for being appointed as Chief Justice of the Delhi High Court. The Collegium resolves to recommend accordingly.


[Resolution dt. 10-05-2019]

Collegium Resolutions

Appointments & TransfersNews

The Collegium considers that the following two persons are deserving and suitable in all respects for being appointed as Judges of the Supreme Court of India:

1. Mr. Justice Bhushan Ramkrishna Gavai,
Judge, Bombay High Court, and

2. Mr. Justice Surya Kant,
Chief Justice, Himachal Pradesh High Court
(PHC: Punjab & Haryana)

“While recommending the names of Mr Justice Bhushan Ramkrishna Gavai and Mr Justice Surya Kant, the Collegium has taken into consideration combined seniority on all-India basis of Chief Justices and senior puisne Judges of High Courts, apart from their competence, conduct and integrity. The Collegium has also kept in mind the desirability of giving due representation on the Bench of the Supreme Court, as far as possible, to all the High Courts as well as to all sections of the society including those belonging to SC/ST/OBC categories, women and minorities. We are also conscious of the fact that some High Courts have remained unrepresented in the Supreme Court.”

In view of the foregoing, the Collegium comprising of Ranjan Gogoi, CJ and S.A. Bobde, N.V. Ramana, Arun Mishra and R.F. Nariman, JJ. resolves to recommend that appointments be made in the following order:
1. Justice Bhushan Ramkrishna Gavai, and
2. Justice Surya Kant


[Resolution dt. 08-05-2019]

Supreme Court of India

Case BriefsSupreme Court

Supreme Court: Stating that the essential qualifications for appointment to a post are for the employer to decide, the bench of Arun Mishra and Navin Sinha, JJ said,

“The court cannot lay down the conditions of eligibility, much less can it delve into the issue with regard to desirable qualifications being at par with the essential eligibility by an interpretive re­writing of the advertisement. Questions of equivalence will also fall outside the domain of judicial review.”

The Court further held that if the language of the advertisement and the rules are clear, the Court cannot sit in judgment over the same. If there is an ambiguity in the advertisement or it is contrary to any rules or law the matter has to go back to the appointing authority after appropriate orders, to proceed in accordance with law.

“In no case can the Court, in the garb of judicial review, sit in the chair of the appointing authority to decide what is best for the employer and interpret the conditions of the advertisement contrary to the plain language of the same.”

The Court was hearing the appeal filed against the order of the High Court holding that candidates possessing the requisite years of experience in research and development of drugs and testing of the same, are also eligible to be considered for appointment to the post of Assistant Commissioner (Drugs) and Drug Inspectors under separate advertisements dated 04.01.2012 and 31.03.2015.

It was submitted before the Court that the academic qualifications coupled with the requisite years of practical experience in the manufacturing and testing of drugs were essential qualifications for appointment. Research experience in a research and development laboratory was a desirable qualification which may have entitled such a person to a preference only. The latter experience could not be equated with and considered to be at par with the essential eligibility to be considered for appointment. It was argued that the High Court erred in misreading the advertisement to redefine the desirable qualification as an essential qualification by itself.

The Court said that the plain reading of the advertisement provides that a degree in Pharmacy or Pharmaceutical Chemistry or in medicine with specialization in Clinical Pharmacology or Microbiology from a University coupled with the requisite years of experience thereafter in manufacturing or testing of drugs were essential qualifications. Preference could be given to those possessing the additional desirable qualification of research experience in the synthesis and testing of drugs in a research laboratory.

The Court also said that

“an expert committee may have been constituted and which examined the documents before calling the candidates for interview cannot operate as an estoppel against the clear terms of the advertisement to render an ineligible candidate eligible for appointment.”

[Maharashtra Public Service Commission v. Sandeep Shriram Warade, 2019 SCC OnLine SC 652, decided on 03.05.2019]