SC restrains HC from finalising merit of superior judicial services exam
The Supreme Court in its interim order on Wednesday restrained Punjab and Haryana High Court from finalising the merit list of the Punjab and Haryana Superior Judicial Services-2019 examination held last year.
The apex court, however, allowed the high court to conduct the interviews but not finalise the merit list till the final decision. Notice has also been issued to the registrar general of the high court. Next hearing is in April.
Petitioner Harkirat Singh Ghuman had alleged discrepancies in conducting the main written exam, which had caused “prejudice to him and other candidates”. Ghuman’s writ petition was dismissed by the high court last month after which he filed a special leave petition in the Supreme Court.
As per his petition, the high court invited applications in May 2019 for filling eight vacancies of additional district session judges for Punjab and 11 for Haryana from advocates. The examination was conducted in November.
Ghuman raised a three-point grievance. He said there shouldn’t be the minimum marks condition in the main written examination but 40% marks requirement was laid down. He said the criminal law question paper handed over to the candidates was incomplete as the questions in that paper were only for 160 marks instead of 200. “When the discrepancy was brought to the notice of the invigilators, a supplementary question paper containing four questions was given. By then half time had already elapsed. This led to panic among candidates. No extra time was given for answering the additional questions,” he said. Despite repeated requests, the candidates were not provided the details of marks obtained in each paper, he said.