The state will soon get 1,100 more police sub inspectors (PSI) after the Bombay High Court upheld the examination process of the Maharashtra Public Service Commission (MPSC) for the appointment of the same.
A division bench of Justice A M Khanwilkar and Justice Rajendra Sawant allowed the appeal filed by the MPSC against the order of Maharashtra Administrative Tribunal (MAT), which had given relief to 170 constables who were not successful in the examination.
On July 20, 2008, the MPSC had conducted a Limited Departmental Competitive Examination for filling up 533 vacancies in the PSI level post, for which 17,507 candidates appeared. This examination is for constables, naiks and head constables. Those who qualify are directly appointed as PSIs.
A constable who is an SSC pass has to have a minimum of six years of service as a constable in the force.
A constable with an HSC degree has to have four to five years to be eligible to appear for the examination.
On November 12, 2009, the MPSC declared the list of successful candidates. One hundred and seventy police constables who failed approached MAT challenging the process of appointment by MPSC.
Counsel Anil Anturkar and advocate Sugandh Deshmukh argued that the minimum number of years of service should be considered after the constable has acquired an education qualification.
His service prior to completing the educational qualification should not be considered, argued Anturkar.
Besides, some constables were made to run on a 200m track, some on a 400m track and others on 800m track for the 800m run test.
Those running on smaller tracks lost time in negotiating the curves, argued Anturkar. Ashutosh Kumbhkoni, counsel for the MPSC, opposed saying educational qualification with minimum number of years was introduced to encourage constables to take up higher education.
He said every candidate had the choice to select the venue of the exam so they cannot raise the dispute on the length of track.
The high court observed, “The object and purpose of the rule is to provide an incentive to the employee to acquire higher educational qualifications. It is intended to encourage people working in the force to strive towards excellence.
It is a welfare provision.” The counsels for the constables sought stay on the order to allow them to approach the Supreme Court.
Kumbhkoni argued that appointments of 1,100 PSIs were put on hold as the issue was pending in the HC. The MPSC had conducted examinations in 2009 and 2010. However, the lists of successful candidates have not been declared.
The high court refused to stay its order, however, it asked MPSC not to act on the decision (appointing PSIs) for two weeks.