PUBLIC SERVICE COMMISSION J&K Vs. SANJAY DHAR
LAWS(J&K)-1999-4-36
HIGH COURT OF JAMMU AND KASHMIR
Decided on April 15,1999

Public Service Commission JAndK Appellant
VERSUS
Sanjay Dhar Respondents

JUDGEMENT

- (1.) THIS letters patent appeal is directed against an interim direction dated: 21.09.94 passed by a learned single Bench in O.W.P.No:675 of 1993. The brief facts of the case are these. The appellant had invited applications for making selection to the posts of Munsiffs some time in the year 1992. The respondent considering himself eligible applied for appearing in the competative examination to be conducted in accordance with the J&K Civil Service (Judicial) Recruitment Rules, 1967 (for short the recruitment Rules), but his application was rejected on the ground that he did not satisfy the eligibility criteria prescribed under the Rules. He challenged the order dated: 02.07.1993 rejecting his application and by this court order dated: 21.07.1993, the appellant was directed to permit the writ petitioner to appear in the examination at his own risk and responsibility. While admitting the position on 21.09.1994, the order dated: 21.07.1993 was modified and the appellant was directed to communicate the result of the writ petitioner to the Government and in case he was selected, the Government was directed to consider him for appointment. The appellant challenges the order dated: 21.09.1994 on the ground that it has virtually granted final relief to the writ petitioner before the legality of the order of rejecting his application was determined.
(2.) MR . Raina, learned counsel appearing for the appellant, submits that the entire controversy rests on the interpretation of Rule 9 of the recruitment Rules. Under Rule 9, eligibility certificate was to be issued by the District Judge only. The certificate issued by an authority other than the District Judge, it is argued, does not satisfy the eligibility criteria and the appellant was, therefore, justified in rejecting the application of the writ petitioner because the certificate issued in this case was issued by the Registrar of the High Court of Delhi. The contention of Mr. Kotwal learned counsel appearing for the respondent on the other hand, is that the purpose of the certificate is only to authenticate the actual practice at the Bar. Since this fact has been certified by the Registrar of the High Court of Delhi, the authentication of the certificate by the District Judge Delhi answers the requirement of the Rule.
(3.) RULE 9 of the Recruitment Rules reads as under: - Practice at Bar: - A candidate for recruitment to the service must have put in at least two years actual practice at the bar by the date on which he submits his application for such recruitment and must produce a certificate to this effect from the District Judge within the local limits of whose jurisdiction he has practised at the Bar. Two -fold requirements of the Rule are: actual practice at the Bar and this must be certified by the District Judge within local limits of whose jurisdiction the candidate has practised at the Bar. The writ petitioner has first produced a certificate issued by the Registrar High Court of Delhi dated:22.12.1992, which reads as under: - On the basis of the material/documents made available to this court, it is certified that Shri Sanjay Dhar, Advocate, c/o A.K. Singla & Co., flat ËœLâ„¢ Sager Apartment, 6 -Tilk Marg, New Delhi, who was enrolled as an Advocate with Bar council of J&K in January, 1990, is practising as Advocate in Delhi since October, 1990 . As this certificate was not in accord with Rule 9 of the recruitment Rules, therefore, vide later dated: 12.03.1993, the appellant asked the respondent to make up the deficiency in his application regarding actual practice certificate from District & Sessions Judge based on the personal knowledge or official records of courts giving relevant dates of actual practice. Instead of complying this, the writ petitioner, it appears, submitted a copy of the certificate issued by the Registrar duly counter -signed by the District & Sessions Judge, Delhi dated: 17.03.1993. Since this certificate was not in accord with Rule 9, the appellant rejected his application on the ground that he has failed to produce actual practice certificate as required under Rule 9 of the Recruitment Rules and the decision was conveyed to him vide letter dated:02.07.1993. The writ petitioner sought quashment of letter dated: 02.07.1993 and also a direction to the appellant to allow him to appear in the competitive examination, inter -alia on the grounds: 1) that the post of Registrar of High Court of Delhi being equivalent to the post of District & Sessions Judge, the certificate of actual practice issued by the former should be deemed to be the certificate issued by the latter; 2) that Rule 9 of the Recruitment Rules is defective and the words District Judge should be substituted by the words Registrar because in case of a person practising at the High Court or in the Supreme Court, a District Judge is unable to issue such a certificate; and 3) that the certificate having been duly countersigned by the District Judge should be treated as issued by him and accordingly accepted. The question involved for consideration is, whether the obligation cast on the District Judge by Rule 9 to certify actual practice is discharged when he countersigns the certificate issued by any other authority, including the Registrar, Delhi High Court. As noticed above, the emphasis is on actual practice at the bar. Since a District Judge holds a regular court, therefore, the rule insists that the certificate of actual practice at the bar must be issued by the District Judge. The object of the purpose purported to be achieved by the Rule is to ensure that such certificates are not issued in routine. This alone explains the emphasis on the expression actual practice at the Bar . Even a cursory reading of the certificate produced by the writ petitioner does not answer the requirement of the Rule because it merely contains a statement that it has been issued on the basis of the material/documents made available to the Registrar. The certificate is not based on the personal knowledge of the Registrar. Since the certificate was issued on the basis of the material/documents, the appellant vide letter dated 12th March, 1993, asked the respondent to furnish a fresh certificate in terms of the following: - Actual practice certificate from the District & Sessions Judge based on the personal knowledge or official records of courts giving relevant dates of actual practice.â„¢ This was an opportunity provided to the writ petitioner to satisfy the requirement of the Rules. He failed to avail of it and instead he produced the same certificate though was counter -signed by the District Judge Delhi.;


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