HC asks Haryana to give government job to Kargil war solider
Almost seven years after he petitioned the government for a job under the sports policy, a Kargil war decorated solider and international athlete will get the appointment on the Punjab and Haryana high court’s intervention.
The HC bench of justice Arun Monga holding that the government decision was discriminatory has directed that the soldier be given job within two months commensurate with his achievements on parity.
Joginder Singh had won bronze medal for India in international athletics competition (equivalent to the Asian Games) at Kuala Lumpur in 2006. He had to leave the army in 2007 due to loss of vision. While serving in the army, he was posted at the border where he suffered an eye injury resulting in permanent loss of vision.
Initially, he was found to be 75% visually handicapped as per his medico-legal examination carried out in June 2006 at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi.
During his 22-year tenure with the army, he was awarded commendation medals from the army known as: 9 years medal, Special Service Medal 20 years medal and Operation Vijay Medal (Kargil War).
He had applied for a government job in 2014 under the Haryana sports policy. But government kept dillydallying on his appointment and he was told to apply afresh in 2019 under the new policy notified in 2018, as per which he was declared overage. Following this, he had approached the HC in 2019.
The court found that while he was denied job in 2014, one Rajesh Kumar, who had participated in the same event, was given employment.
“...rejecting the candidature of one and accepting that of another, for the persons who are equally placed, does smack of an element of red-tapism, perhaps nepotism and most certainly discrimination,” the court said on government handling of the case.
It also came to know during the proceedings that though his application was rejected terming him overage in 2014, it was never communicated to him and he got to know about the decision in 2019.
The court found that he was eligible for appointment as per the prevalent policy of the government in 2013 as there was no upper age limit prescribed for giving appointments to the candidates.
The court said there is another aspect of him being 70% disabled. He was entitled to special benefit of age relaxation as per the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016.