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The Uttar Pradesh government will appeal against an order of the Allahabad High Court that stayed the appointment process of 69,000 assistant teachers in the state.

Uttar Pradesh’s basic education minister Satish Chand Dwivedi was quoted in the media saying the government has already issued a directive for cancellation of counselling and document verification of selected candidates across the state. This followed the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad high court staying the recruitment process on a writ petition even as it fixed July 12 as the next date of hearing. The minister said the government will appeal to a larger bench.

In its order, the High Court today directed the Secretary,  University Grants commission to submit the expert opinion to the Examination Regulatory Authority of Uttar Pradesh on receipt of the papers including question paper, provisional answer key along with the objections received from the candidates appeared in Assistant Teachers Recruitment Examination, 2019.

The Court has also stayed the notification on 08/05/2020 whereby the final answer key has been issued is here by stayed, and all proceedings pursuant to notification dated 08/05/2020 are also stayed until next date of listing.

The High Court after looking into the magnitude and the scale of the examination and the number of persons whose future is at stake, deem it appropriate to refer the provisional answer key along with the objections to experts to be appointed by the Secretary, University Grants Commission, New Delhi. However, the Examination Regulatory Authority, Uttar Pradesh was directed to send the question paper, provisional answer key along with the objections received from the candidates to the Secretary, University Grants Commission, New Delhi within a period of 10 days from today”.

On receipt of the papers by the Secretary, University Grants Commission, he shall proceed to appoint a panel of experts within one week, from amongst persons who have adequate knowledge in the subjects in relation to which opinion has been sought.

The experts are required to give their opinion within a period of 2 weeks from the date of receipt of the papers and, therefore, the Secretary University Grants commission, New Delhi is directed to submit the expert opinion to the Examination Regulatory Authority of Uttar Pradesh who shall bring he same on record by filing an affidavit before this Court”, said the Court.

Allahabad High Court Single Judge bench of Justice Alok Mathur heard the bunch of writ petitions together as they have raised common challenge to the result of “Assistant Teacher Recruitment Examination”-2019 on 13/05/2020 declared by the Examination Regulatory Authority, Uttar Pradesh.

The said examination has been embroiled in-quagmire of litigation since its very inception, and fresh controversies have erupted at each stage of the process which have engaged the attention of the High Court as well as the Hon’ble Supreme Court”, said by Justice Alok Mathur.

The grievance raised by the petitioner’s in the set of writ petitions is with regard to the “final answer key”issued by the respondent, after inviting objections. The petitioners have vehemently submitted and demonstrated that certain questions are on the face of it erroneous, certain answers are also incorrect and some questions are extremely ambiguous and a few of them are debatable and argumentative and therefore have multiple correct answers and the benefit of the marks of such of these questions are liable to be awarded to the petitioner’s,and if so awarded, they would cross the threshold qualifying marks and gain entry to the next round of the selection process.

The Government Order was issued on 01/12/2018 for conducting the Assistant Teacher Recruitment Examination-2019 for filling up 69,000 vacancies for the post of Assistant Teachers. The said examination was to be held on 06/01/2019. According to the guidelines the examination was to be conducted by the Examination Regulatory Authority,Uttar Pradesh. In clause 17 of the said timetable provided that by 11/01/2019 objections could be made with regard to the answer key published by the respondents, pursuant to which, clause 18 provided that the objections would be referred to a subject specialist and their response would be elicited by 18/01/2019 pursuant to which the fresh answer key would be published on 19/01/2019 and the final result will be published on 22/01/2019.

The High Court made a remark on the aforesaid guidelines of the government that the above provisions clearly indicate that the entire process of evaluation was designed to be transparent and the candidates had full opportunity to compare the answers submitted by them, with the standard/correct answers provided by the examining authority.

Sri Raghvendra Kumar Singh, Learned Advocate General assisted by Sri Ran Vijay Singh, Learned Chief Standing Counsel have filed a short counter affidavit raising certain preliminary objections with regard to the maintainability of the writ petition and have submitted that the petition is liableto be dismissed on the ground inter alia, of non-joinder and misjoinder of parties, contradictory reliefs having been claimed by the petitioner’s, and also that the petitioners after having attempted the questions in the examination, then it is not open for them to challenge the correctness of the same subsequently by means of a writ petition.

“I find force in the arguments raised by the petitioners.The question paper can be challenged only after a candidate has appeared in the examination and by no stretch of imagination can it be argued that any candidate would give up his future prospects only on a possibility of a future successful spell of litigation. He has a right to challenge the wrongful inclusion of the questions on various grounds available to him”, mentioned by Justice Alok Mathur.

Therefore, in the peculiar facts of the case, after due consideration of the arguments by the parties, Justice Alok Mathur was of the considered opinion that merely qualifying the Assistant Teacher Recruitment Examination does not bestow any indefeasible right in favour of the “qualified candidates” for appointment as Assistant teacher.

Illustrations

Question number 143 of the booklet “D” was examined by the High court. Question 143 reads as under: –

143. “Educational Administration provides appropriate education to the appropriate student by appropriate teacher by which the can able to become the best by using available maximum resources” This definition is given by

(1) S.N Mukherjee

(2) Cambell

(3) Welfare Graha

(4) Dr Atmanand Mishra

Note- The answer key issued by the respondents has given thecorrect answer as (3) Welfare Graha.

On a factual basis, it was submitted that the name of educationist who gave the said definition is Graham Belfour while in the options to the said question the name of Graham Belfour is missing and the respondents have declared Welfare Graha to be the correct answer.

Read the order here;

1591182258666-SERSL-8056-2020

-India Legal Bureau

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