Applicants Must Comply With All Conditions Or Eligibility Criteria As Per Advertisement For Recruitment, Before Cut-Off Date – Supreme Court
A two-judge Bench of Justice MR Shah and Justice BV Nagarathna has held that as per the settled proposition of law, a candidate/applicant has to comply with all the conditions/eligibility criteria as per the advertisement before the cut-off date mentioned unless extended by the recruiting authority.
The Supreme Court further held that when the Writ Petitioner (Respondent) did not produce the photocopy of the NCC 'B' Certificate along with the original application as per the advertisement and the same was submitted after a period of three years from the cut-off date and after the physical test, Respondent was not entitled to additional five marks of the NCC 'B' Certificate.
Advocate Mr. Abhinav Mukerji appeared for the Appellant-State while Advocate M. Shoeb Alam appeared for the Respondent before the Court.
An appeal was preferred by the State of Bihar before the Apex Court assailing the judgment of the Division Bench of the Patna High Court which had condoned the delay of three years and 55 days in filing the appeal.
The Division Bench had allowed the appeal and set aside the judgment of the Single Judge. The HC had further directed the DIG Munger to take into account the selection list forwarded to him which included the name of the Respondent – Original Writ Petitioner and appoint him as Constable.
In this case, the Respondent-Writ Petitioner did not submit his NCC 'B' certificate either with the application form or with the second application form for the appointment of Constable in the Bihar Police Force. Due to this, he had scored 12 marks and as he did not submit the certificate, he was not accorded with additional five marks. It was alleged by the Respondent that his total marks were 17 which made him eligible for appointment.
The Single Judge had refused to issue and positive direction with regard to the consideration of his candidature and held that there was no pleading in the Writ Petition that the Respondent had annexed his NCC 'B' certificate along with his original application form.
The Appellant contended before the Apex Court that as per the settled position of law the documents submitted at the time of application only shall have to be considered.
While the Respondent argued that he had submitted all the necessary documents including the NCC 'B' Certificate along with his application.
The Supreme Court noted that the original Writ Petitioner did not produce the photocopy of the NCC 'B' Certificate along with his original application, hence, in the absence of such certificate he was not allotted additional five marks.
The Court while rejecting the argument of the Respondent that he had produced all the necessary documents along with his original application held that it was nothing but an afterthought. In this context, the Bench opined –
"Having failed to get any positive direction in the earlier writ petition on the ground that there is no pleading that he had annexed his NCC 'B' certificate alongwith the original application, he is not entitled to any positive direction and the original writ petitioner cannot be permitted to improve his case in the subsequent litigation, when it was not his case in the earlier round of litigation."
The Court further observed, "When a decision was taken on the representation made by the respondent No.1 – original writ petitioner which was pursuant to the earlier order passed by the learned Single Judge in writ petition being CWJC No.5431 of 2008, the authority rightly refused to allot/award five additional marks of NCC 'B' certificate."
The Court additionally held that the Division Bench of the High Court had erred in directing the Appellants to appoint Respondent – Original Writ Petitioner on the post of Constable.
Accordingly, the Court allowed the appeal and set aside the impugned order of the Division Bench of the High Court and restored the judgment of the Single Judge.