The two-judge bench of Justice M. R. Shah, and Justice B. V. Nagarathna has directed the Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) to pay lump sum compensation to a man who was not appointed as a driver during the driver's recruitment test due to bad/wrongful recruitment process.

In this case Respondent, No.1- Sandeep Kaushik had approached the Delhi High Court against DTC citing that the recruitment process for drivers held years ago was bad/wrongful as the same was made solely on the basis of marks allotted in a viva test. The High Court allowed the petition of the respondent and directed his appointment as driver.

Feeling aggrieved, DTC challenged the order of the High Court holding the appointment of respondent no.1 as a Driver with seniority as per his merit, before the Supreme Court.

Dr. Monika Gusain, Counsel appearing on behalf of the DTC argued that the appointments were made by Respondent No. 2 and that 14 years have passed since drivers were recruited. She also emphasized that since then all appointments of drivers at DTC were being made contractually and as such no post of driver is available for the respondent to be reinstated in.

Manish Bhardwaj, Counsel representing Sandeep Kaushik submitted that the High Court of Delhi rightly observed that the entire recruitment process was bad as the appointments were made solely on the basis of marks allotted in the viva test.

On considering the submission made by the Counsels, the Bench had to decide whether the respondent No. 1 could be appointed as a driver 14 years after the initial recruitment.

In this context, the Bench observed that – "All the subsequent appointments are now being made on contractual basis and through contractors. As on today, the age of the respondent No.1 would be approximately 49 years. The retirement age of the driver is reported to be 55 years. If the respondent No.1 – original writ petitioner is to be appointed now as driver, he will have to clear the driving test to drive the bus on the road."

In view of the above, the Apex Court held that the Respondent No. 1 be compensated by DTC for a sum of Rs, 7.5 lakhs with 6 percent interest from September 2013 till actual payments is made. The Bench also directed that the appellant may recover the compensation from Respondent No.2, but the initial liability to pay the amount would be on DTC.

Cause Title- Delhi Transport Corporation v. Sandeep Kaushik and Ors.

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