Don’t avoid implementation of final court judgment: HC

Excelsior Correspondent

Srinagar, May 18: The High Court today made it clear that the implementation of final judgment shall not be avoided on the directions of the Government.
The division bench comprising Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey and Justice Puneet Gupta has granted further two weeks time to Chairman Service Selection Board to implement the judgment of the court and make fresh selection to the posts of Assistant Information Officers (AIOs).
The court observed that the Board can make the recommendations by treating the directions of the Division Bench as final without having any application of the notification issued by the Government.
“We grant two weeks’ further time to respondent-Chairman, J&K Service Selection Board to submit compliance and make it clear that implementation of the judgment passed by this Court shall not be avoided merely because of the directions passed by the Government”, the DB directed.
These observation were made after the Board counsel submitted that while the Board was in the process of taking the selection process to its logical conclusion in tune with the directions passed by this Court, the Government of Jammu and Kashmir (General Administration Department) in terms of notification dated 03.02.2022 asked the Board to treat all the posts referred prior to 31.10.2019 for which selection have not been finalized till date, as also the posts in which there are litigations are to be treated as withdrawn.
“Perusal of the record reveals that the respondents were on their undertaking granted time to take the selection process to its logical conclusion at the earliest and with the said undertaking the contempt filed by the petitioners prior to the instant one stands disposed of on 13.12.2021”, DB observed.
Court further said, that the respondents having failed to implement the order formed the ground for petitioners to file instant contempt petition and counsel for the petitioners submitted that there is no scope for the respondent to play hide and seek in view of the judgment of the Division Bench having become final after dismissal of the SLP by the Supreme Court.
It is noted here that the court while closing the earlier contempt petition in December last year against the Board had directed to conclude the selection process of AIOs preferably within one month.
Court had given liberty to the petitioner to approach the court again in the event any grievance qua the implementation of the basic judgment remains. In the basic verdict, court had declared the selection process of 29 Assistant Information Officers by SSB as invalid and had directed for fresh selection to these posts.
The writ court while holding the selection process invalid had observed that the Board has sidelined the merit in the qualifying examination, as no credit has been given to higher qualification.
The writ court had directed the SSB to finalize the process of selection with promptitude of the eligible candidates who have applied in response to three advertisement notices issued in the year 2006, 2008 and 2010 inviting application for the posts of Assistant Information Officer Grade-II and thereafter the board issued a provisional selection list on 21 January 2012 which has been nullified by the court.
It is pertinent to mention that here authorities did not stop here and approached the Supreme Court by way of SLP challenging therein the High Court verdicts and the Supreme Court on February 20, 2017, also dismissed the appeal of the State Government and upheld the judgments of High Court in which provisional selection of 29 Assistant Information officers issued by the Board has been held as invalid.
“We do not see any ground to interfere with the impugned order(s). The special leave petitions (SLPs) are accordingly dismissed,” Supreme Court said while dismissing SLP filed by the then State Government.