The nine-year battle of a physically challenged Ludhiana man for a government job has ended. Denied job on “irrelevant consideration”, he will now get employment after third round of litigation since the process started in 2007.
Avatar Singh was an applicant for 9,988 posts of primary teachers advertised by the government in 2007 and filled the form in the Scheduled Caste (SC) and physically challenged category. As he had deposited fee prescribed for the SC candidates, he was not considered in the physically challenged category.
He did not qualify for SC category and was not considered for the physically challenged category. However, three seats of the 11 seats remained unfilled. He approached the court in 2012, which directed the government to decide his representation. As the government failed to act, he filed contempt. It was at this point that the impugned order of rejecting his claims was passed by the government in 2012.
The high court observed that Article 14 of the Constitution strikes at arbitrariness in state action and ensures fairness and equality of treatment. “It requires that state action must not be arbitrary but must be based on some rational and relevant principle which is non-discriminatory. It must not be guided by any extraneous or irrelevant consideration because that would be denial of equality,” the HC bench said adding that the principle of reasonableness and rationality is legally as well as philosophically an essential element of equality.
The HC also said that government action should not be arbitrary and dependent upon “sweet will” like a private individual. “The action must be in conformity with standard of norms, which is not arbitrary, irrational or irrelevant,” the HC bench observed further stating that government action was also against the provisions of the Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995 which emphasizes on equal opportunities in employment and rehabilitation of person with disability.