AMRESH BHATNAGAR Vs. STATE OF UTTARAKHAND & ANOTHER
HIGH COURT OF UTTARAKHAND
State of Uttarakhand and another
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(1.) Heard .
(2.) The petitioner is physically handicapped. The fact that he is a physically challenged person and is eligible for appointment as physically challenged person in a Government service is not in dispute. What is in dispute, however, is as to whether irrespective of the fact that whether the petitioner is physically challenged he can get appointment in government service in the State of Uttarakhand under the physically challenged quota, even though, he is not a permanent resident of Uttarakhand. This is the issue for determination before this Court. An advertisement was issued on 28.02.2007 by the Uttarakhand Public Service Commission inviting applications from eligible candidates for filling up 134 posts of Review Officer in the Uttarakhand Secretariat. The appointment / selection had to be made under the present policy of the reservation. The reservation was both vertical and horizontal and inter alia, there was 3% reservation for physically challenged person. The petitioner applied as a General category though physically challenged candidate. He appeared in the written examination and was declared a successful candidate and subsequently the Public Service Commission published a list of successful candidates in which the petitioner's name also figures. He was asked to report for the purpose of joining with all his testimonials. The recommendation for appointment of the selected candidates were sent to the State Government for approval. However, the name of the petitioner was returned by the Government on 21.02.2012 on the ground that the Government of Uttarakhand has made amendment in Uttarakhand Public Service (Reservation to Physically Handicapped, Dependent of Freedom Fighter and Ex-Servicemen) Act, 1993 on 16.03.2009, which provides that the reservation under the physically challenged category can only be made of such physically challenged person who are permanent residents of Uttarakhand. Admittedly, the petitioner is not a permanent resident of Uttarakhand and is a permanent resident of Jaunpur which is in Uttar Pradesh. Petitioner, however, challenges this action of the State as being arbitrary and violative of Article 14 of the Constitution.
(3.) The petitioner contends that when the advertisement was issued on 28.02.2007, where it was clearly stated that the reservation for physically challenged person will be given as per the prevalent Government Orders. The Government Order dated 11.10.2004 specifically provides for 3% reservation for physically challenged person, however, there is no restriction here that only such physically challenged persons will be appointed who are permanent residents of Uttarakhand. Moreover, the advertisement itself clearly states that the restriction of being a permanent resident will only be applicable to the Scheduled Caste & Scheduled Tribes category and will not be applicable to the physically challenged category. It also appears that when the name of the petitioner was returned to the Public Service Commission for reconsideration, the Commission reconsidered the matter and recommended the case of the petitioner once again to the State Government for appointment of the petitioner, but no decision has yet been taken so far by the State Government.;
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