CAT dismisses pleas challenging selection of 1540 junior assistants

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Representational Image File/ GK

Srinagar, Feb 13: Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) on Monday dismissed a batch of pleas, challenging the selection process adopted by the JKSSB pertaining to 1540 posts of Junior Assistants in Jammu and Kashmir.

The CAT’s decision came after it heard counsel for the parties including advocate Mir Suhail for private respondents and Satinder Singh AAG for JKSSB.

 The JKSSB had issued various advertisement notifications, four of them in 2020, and three in 2021 regarding these posts. In the scheme of the examination it was provided that the criteria of selection will be 20 points for Skill Test and 80 points for Written Examination. The advertisement notices itself made clear that the result will be subject to adopting the “normalization process of Equi-Percentile Equating Method.”

The written test for the examination was conducted from 20 to 24 January last year.  

 A number of applicants challenged the use of “normalization process of Equi-Percentile Equating Method” and sought quashing and declaring null and void the process.

 “In the present OA (Aboriginal Application), the applicants have challenged the decision of the respondents (JKSSB) in applying the Normalization method in the final selection. Although the applicants were informed well in advance in the advertisement itself, subsequently vide notices dated 27.10.2021 and 19.1.2022, they did not opt to challenge the same,” said a bench of D.S.Mahra (Member, Judicial) and Anand Mathur (Member Administrative).   

 “Rather, they participated in the process of selection and waited for the result. It was only after the tentative merit list was issued by the (JKSSB), the applicants challenged the procedure itself,” the Bench said, adding, “This conduct of the applicants cannot be appreciated.”

  If the applicants were aggrieved by the procedure of normalization to be adopted by the JKSSB, the CAT bench said, they should have challenged the notices as well as the decision of the JKSSB to go for the normalization method before appearing in the exam or at least before the tentative Selection List was issued.”

 The bench said that Apex Court as well as various High Courts have refused to entertain petitions which have been filed by candidates who after participating in the selection process. “Moreover, the respondents (JKSSB) are yet to issue the final Select List of the successful candidates. As of today only a tentative Select List has been issued wherein names of some of the applicants are also figuring,” the Bench said, adding, “Even the applicants are not sure whether their names will eventually find a place in the final selection list or not.”

 Subsequently, the CAT held that the JKSSB was well within right and jurisdiction while adopting and applying the Normalization process called Equi-percentile Equating method in finalizing the selection process.

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