Haryana government on Thursday submitted a list of 34 out of total 64 officers selected through the Haryana Civil Services (executive branch) Examination-1999 to the Punjab and Haryana high court whose answer sheets were found tampered either by way of cutting, rewriting or by increase of marks by the examiners to ensure their selection.
The development took place before the division headed by justice Satish Kumar Mittal during the resumed hearing of a 11-year-old public interest litigation filed by for mer Palwal Congress MLA Karan Singh Dalal and non-selected candidates alleging nepotism and manipulations in selection.
Selections were made during the regime of then chief minister Om Prakash Chautala and all the selected officers are serving on the top posts.
It was only after Hindustan Times had highlighted in its news item in March 13 edition about the bench headed by justice SK Mittal granting seven back-to-back adjournments in the case since April last year, that justice Mittal had refused Haryana government’s request of short adjournment on May 16 and ordered day-to-day hearing in the case.
The case is still pending adjudication in the high court despite the fact that the Supreme Court had directed it in March 2011 to decide the case “as early as possible.”
State gover nment counsel Anil Rathee read the “discrepancies, manipulations and interpolations” noted on the answer sheets of the 34 candidates. He submitted that there was a candidate (Kuldhir Singh) who had attempted four questions of History but marks were given for five questions.
Surprisingly, in case of Ashok Kumar, Rathee submitted, “In Sanskrit paper of this candidate Q No. 3 was found attempted in English language.” Similarly, there are candidates who were awarded marks for map in Geography paper but there is no map attached to the answer sheet.
Entire record of the answer sheets of the exam is kept in lock and key with the high court.
Appearing for some of the selected candidates, senior advocate Rajiv Atma Ram suggested the court that it should also examine the answer sheets of non-selected candidates with regard to rewriting, cutting or increase of marks.
On this, the court said that it would not only examine the answer sheets of those whose names have been provided by the state government as well as the petitioners but would also carryout random check of the answer sheets of non-selected candidates.
Representing the petitioner, senior advocate Kanwaljit Singh argued that the entire selection must go because of nepotism.
The case has now been posted for next hearing to May 27 for arguments on the allegations that those candidates who have scored more in the written were granted less in viva-voice and those who got less in written were granted more in viva-voice to ensure their selection.