Never appointed, yet on department seniority lists, candidates move HC

Saurabh Malik

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 21

In what could turn out to be a case of “colossal impersonation”, out of job candidates for the posts of teachers in the Punjab Education Department have moved the Punjab and Haryana High Court alleging that their names figured in the seniority lists of masters and mistresses even though they were never issued appointment letters.

Seeking an inquiry by the vigilance or by any other independent agency, Baby Rani and other petitioners have also sought directions to fix responsibility for withholding the appointment letters to the petitioners before initiating necessary departmental and criminal action against the “guilty officials”.

As the petition filed through counsel Kapil Kakkar and Hema Kakkar came up for hearing before the High Court, Justice Arun Monga’s Bench was told that the petitioners were shown to be serving as teachers and on the rolls of the Education Department since 2014. Yet, they continued to be out of job as appointment letters had actually not been issued to them till date.

Taking up the matter, Justice Monga has issued notice of motion and the counsel appearing for the state has sought time to file a reply/affidavit. The case will now come up for further hearing in December third week.

Kapil Kakkar contended that the respondents issued an advertisement on September 23, 2009, inviting applications to fill up 7,654 posts on contract basis in the teaching and non-teaching cadre in the Department of Education. It included 1,200 posts of Punjabi masters and mistresses. Out of the total, 120 posts were reserved for the candidates belonging to SC (R&O) category.

He contended the petitioners, belonging to the specified category and possessing theprescribed qualification, applied for the post of Punjabi mistresses and were called for scrutiny of documents in October 2010.

Kakkar further contended the respondents filled only a few posts in an illegal and arbitrary manner despite the availability of eligible candidates. The petitioners and other candidates were included in the waiting list. They and other candidates then filed writ petitions for directions to the respondents to fill up the vacant posts in BC/SC category.

Kakkar further submitted the High Court directed the respondents to fill remaining vacant posts in all categories in accordance with the candidates’ merit. Meanwhile,the respondent-department issued seniority list dated June 19 of the masters and mistresses. The petitioners were stunned to note that their names figured in the seniority list and they were shown working as Punjabi mistresses since April 6, 2014. The seniority list also contained the names of persons junior to them, who were lower in merit in the relevant selection, Kakkar added.

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