The Punjab and Haryana high court has made it clear that in view of the nature of duties, physically challenged candidates can be denied appointment to certain jobs despite the reservation quota.
The decision came while dismissing petitions of three candidates who had applied for the post of lineman in Punjab State Transmission Corporation Limited (PSTCL) under the physically challenged category.
Justice Sabina observed that the petitioners were physically challenged.
One of them had undergone total hip replacement, while some of the others had shortened lower limb and disability in the ankle.
“Since the petitioners are unable to perform the duties of lineman on account of disability suffered by them, no ground for interference by this court is made out,” the court said.
The counsel appearing for PSTCL had submitted that duties attached to the post of lineman were arduous and could not be performed by the petitioners.
Also, in normal course, a lineman was required to climb poles and repair high-tension wires.
Therefore, it was not feasible to appoint the petitioners in view of the risk involved to their lives and in larger public interest.
As many as 5,000 posts of lineman had been advertised by the Punjab State Transmission Corporation Limited in 2011, of which 128 posts were reserved for physically challenged candidates.
Though the petitioners applied for the post of lineman, they had not been issued appointment letters, which led to their seeking legal recourse.