Appointment of recommended candidate can’t be denied without good reason: HC

*Quashes re-advt notice, issues directives to JU

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, May 19: Stating that there has to be a good reason to deny appointment to a recommended candidate, High Court has directed the University of Jammu to act upon the recommendation of the Selection Committee for appointment against the post of Assistant Professor Sanskrit.
The direction was passed in a writ petition filed by Priyanka Arya, wife of Dr Satyapriya Arya of Rohini, New Delhi, who despite recommendations in her favour by the Selection Committee had been denied appointment by the Jammu University for the post of Assistant Professor in the Department of Sanskrit under Open Merit Category.
Instead of appointing her the Jammu University had re-advertised the post vide Advertisement Notice No.Adm/TW/C&R/ 17/2053-73 dated November, 30, 2017 without finalizing the selection process initiated vide Advertisement Notice No.Adm/TW(C&R)/16 /1642-92 dated April, 18, 2016 in which petitioner was a candidate and was shown at S.No.1 in the merit list.
After hearing Advocate Sheikh Shakeel Ahmed appearing for the petitioner whereas Advocate Sanchit Verma appearing for Jammu University, Justice Rajesh Bindal quashed the re-advertisement Notice dated November, 30, 2017 and directed the Jammu University that there is no requirement to fill up the same post for which recommendations had already been made in favour of the petitioner.
“Jammu University is directed to act upon further on the recommendations made by the Selection Committee in accordance with law. To avoid any further litigation, it is clarified that in case the petitioner is appointed, she shall be entitled to all the benefits from the date of her joining the post”, the High Court further directed.
Advocate Ahmed appearing for the petitioner submitted that the petitioner had participated in the process of selection and there was no allegation against her or any of the members of the Selection Committee.
On the other hand, Advocate Sanchit Verma appearing for Jammu University submitted that once it came to the notice of the authorities that one of the experts in the Selection Committee Prof Manu Lata Sharma was guide of one of the candidates in his Research for PhD, the entire selection was cancelled as there was biasness.
“Merely because the petitioner was in the select list at S.No.1, the same does not confer any right on her. Mere selection does not confer any right of appointment. The employer has the discretion to accept or not to accept the recommendations of the Selection Committee”, he further submitted.
After a marathon hearing in the matter, Justice Rajesh Bindal observed, “there is nothing on record to suggest that any person was favouring the petitioner as the only allegation which came in the notice of the University after recommendations were made by the Selection Committee, was some link of that candidate with one of the members of the Selection Committee”, adding “there is no dispute with the proposition of law that mere selection does not confer any right of appointment but equally good is the proposition that there has to be good reason to deny appointment to a candidate selected and recommended for appointment”.
With these observations, Justice Bindal allowed the writ petition and quashed the re-advertisement notice with the direction to the Jammu University to fill up the same post for which recommendations had already been made in favour of the petitioner.