H S SAHNI Vs. STATE OF J&K
LAWS(J&K)-1999-4-27
HIGH COURT OF JAMMU AND KASHMIR
Decided on April 16,1999

H S Sahni Appellant
VERSUS
STATE OF JANDK Respondents

JUDGEMENT

ARUN KUMAR GOEL, J. - (1.) THIS appeal is directed against the judgment passed by a learned Single Judge of this Court in O.W.P. No. 667/ 97. By means of impugned judgment, it was directed that the respondents authorities would treat the writ petition as a representation and take such decision as is permissible under law within a period of six months. This period was to commence from the date, when copy of the order passed by the Court was made available to the authorities alongwith the writ petition and annexure. On decision being taken it was to be indicated to the counsel for the petitioner. It is this decision, which has been questioned in this appeal by the appellants, who are the original petitioners in the writ petition filed by them. The appellants had questioned note no. 3 appended to the Schedule annexed with SRO 180 of 1997 dated 26.05.1997, whereby ratio of 1:3 was provided for recruitment between degree holders and diploma holders engineers to the post of Junior Engineers Grade -ll. Sum and substance of the pleadings of the appellants urged in the writ petition was that higher qualification and better professional service should have been the criteria taken into account by the authorities concerned while framing of SRO thus instead of ratio 1:3 for the post of Junior Engineer Grade II Sum and substance of the pleadings of the appellants urged in the writ petition was that higher qualification and better professional service should be been the criteria taken into account by the authorities concerned while framing of SRO, thus instead of ratio 1:3 for the post of Junior Engineer Grade -ll between Degree holders and diploma holders, it should have infact been 3:1. The basis for such claim by the appellants was that they obtained their degree after six years of their matriculation. On the other hand, the diploma holders get their degree after three years of their matriculation. Thus the number of diploma holders is doubled during the period, one batch of degree holders comes out of this Institution.
(2.) DISCRIMINATION was the other ground put up in support of the petition and pendency of SWP No. 533/88 was urged as an additional ground for the grant of relief prayed for. Having made representations to the government, which remains unattended compelled them to approach the court in the writ petition. On the other hand, case of the respondent state is that the writ petition is not maintainable as there is no violation of any legal, constitutional or statutory right as claimed by the appellants. While elaborating its cause further it was pleaded that the post now designated as Junior Engineer was earlier designated as Sectional Officer and prior to it overseer. This post was in fact manned by Diploma holders and keeping in view the number of degree holders and keeping in view the number of degree holders coming out of the colleges, ratio of 1:3 was fixed with a view to provide an additional entry point to them. Infact degree holders are entitled to be recruited as Assistant Engineers through Public Service Commission, which is the entry point for them. This entry point is the exclusive right available to the degree holders, whereas 20 out of 100 posts of Assistant Engineers are -meant for Departmental Promotees from amongst Diploma holders to this post having requisite number of years/ service as Junior Engineer. Remaining 80 posts go to the degree holders. It has further been pointed out that the matter had been receiving attention of the Government on the representations made by different Associations of degree holders and diploma holders and a Committee was constituted to examine the matter. The recommendations made by the Committee were accepted by the Government except a few points therein, which lead to the issuance of Government Order No. G€stt -13/87 on 29.06.1987. This was protested to by the students as well as graduate Engineers. Associations in the State, as according to them recruitment of all the Graduate Engineers to the post of Junior Engineer could not be done, because they should not be equated with the Diploma holders. It was further urged by the Associations that the post of Assistance Engineers be re -designated for promotion to the post of Assistant Executive Engineers.
(3.) IT was also pointed out by the Government that after having joined as Junior Engineer, a degree holder could compete for the post of Assistant Engineer. Thus, even if he failed for the later job his working as Junior Engineers was not disturbed, whereas diploma holders could only compete at the initial point for the post of Junior Engineer and of course and were liable to be considered for promotion to the post of Assistant Engineer against 20 percent posts subject to his fulfilling other conditions as per rules. And in case a degree holder joined as Junior Engineer Grade II, he was entitled to eight advance increments. It was also the case of the State that simply because degree holders have higher qualifications would not be a ground to change the ratio as mentioned in the schedule and as claimed by the petitioners, which according to it was correct and called for no interference. It is also the case of the respondents that SRO -180 of 1997 -dated 26 -05 -1997 is legally valid and calls for no interference. Ratio being not justiciable was another ground pressed into service for rejecting the claim of the appellants. Learned counsel appearing for the appellants have submitted that the SRO is bad in law as it creates discrimination between degree holders and diploma holders, besides this there is no nexus between the ratio of 1:3 as fixed in the impugned SRO. It is also the case of the appellants that before fixing the ratio, exercise of collecting data regarding the number of degree holders and diploma holders should have been carried out and it was only thereafter that the ratio if any could be fixed by the petitioners. Endeavour on the part of the State should have been to add efficiency by recruiting higher qualified persons, who were available and by fixing the ratio in question, this object has been defeated.;


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