Decided on February 19,1999



- (1.) LIBRARY Assistants twenty one in number were to be selected in pursuance of advertisement notice No. 1/1992 dated November 3, 1992. The educational qualifications prescribed were matric and above. The selection was made. Private respondents came to be selected. Their selection was challenged by preferring a writ petition in this Court. The writ petition was dismissed. It is in these circumstances, the present appeal has been preferred under Clause 12 of the Letters Patent. The case of the appellants before the learned single Judge to this Court was that they are trained in Library Science and possess-experience in the line. It was also submitted that the selection was made without any criteria or norms. The fact that respondents No. 7 and 8 who were the members of the selection committee did not take part in the proceedings and that they had not put their signatures, was also projected. It was basically suggested that the appellants had higher merits and they have been wrongly ignored. In addition to the above, an argument was raised that the Selection Committee distributed total number of posts on zone wise basis. The whole district was divided into 15 educational zones. The system so adopted as per the appellants led to breach of Articles 14 and 16 of the Constitution. The argument raised was that] when the selection was to be made from the District, then the entire District should have been treated as one unit and merit should have been determined accordingly. It is stated that had the merit been determined districtwise, then the appellants would have come high-up in the merit. This argument was negatived. It was observed that the Selection Committee had adopted the right procedure. The other lacunae pointed out were also found to be without substance. Vis-a-vis creating zones, the view expressed was that this had led to justice being done to the various selectees. This division of District into 15 educational zones was as such upheld.
(2.) THERE can be no dispute with the proposition that it is for the concerned authority to determine as to what criteria it has to adopt in the matter of making the selection. As such, with regard to the argument other than the creation of educational zones nothing can be said in favour of the appellants. So far as division of District into different educational zones is concerned something can be said in favour of the appellants. In Naresh Kumar Joshi v. State of Punjab, 1982 Lab IC 498, admission was made to Patwar schools on districtwise basis. The rules provided that the Patwaris would have districtwise seniority, districtwise cadre and districtwise candidature. It was observed that all these considerations are post selection considerations and provide no justification for the selection to be made on districtwise basis. Reliance was placed on the decisions of the Supreme Court reported as Rajendra v. State of Madras AIR 1968 SC 1012, and A. Periakaruppan v. State of Tamil Nadu AIR 1971 SC 2303. In AIR 1968 SC 1012, following observations were made at page 1016: "it is true that Article 14 does not forbid classification, but the classification has to be justified on the basis of the nexus between the classification and the object to be achieved, even assuming that territorial classification may be a reasonable classification. The fact however that the classification by itself is reasonable is not-enough to support it unless there is nexus between the classification and the object to be achieved. Therefore, as the object to be achieved in a case of the kind with which we are concerned is to get the best talent for admission to professional colleges, the allocation of seats districtwise has no reasonable relation with the object to be achieved. If anything, such allocation will result in many cases in the object being destroyed and if that is so, the classification even if reasonable, would result in discrimination, inasmuch as better qualified candidates from one district may be rejected while less qualified candidates from other district may be admitted from either of the two sources. "
(3.) IN the later decision of AIR 1971 SC 2303, (supra) a similar matter was examined. The admission had been made to the various colleges of Tamil Nadu on unitwise basis. This method was found to be contrary to Article 14 of the Constitution.;

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