The Tamil Nadu Public Service Commission (TNPSC) was directed by the Madras High Court to forthwith publish the marks secured by the unselected candidates in the written examination for the posts of Forest Apprentices.
Justice S Nagamuthu, who gave the direction while passing interim orders on a batch of writ petitions from the unsuccessful candidates, also directed the PSC to publish the cut-off marks prescribed by it and call the candidates for oral interview. This exercise should be completed on or before September 17. The judge, however, said that the final selection list of candidates should not be published until further orders from this court.
According to petitioners, they wrote the examination conducted in February and March last year and later attended the physical test. However, they were not selected. They contended that the denial of information relating to publish the marks secured by them affected the transparency in the selection process.
Passing interim orders, the judge observed that people had every right to have information about governmental actions, unless the disclosure of the same was prohibited or not in the interest of the security of the nation.
Free disclosure of information regarding governmental actions would be a measure to reduce the menace of corruption, malpractice, nepotism, favouritism and so on. The right to information has been recognised world-wide. Transparency in public life had become the order of the day.
It is well settled that the right to have information regarding the marks secured by the candidates in the exam conducted by the public authority was one of the fundamental rights under Article 19(1)(4) of the Constitution and the same cannot be denied. Though such right was subject to reasonable restrictions, the PSC has no reason to deny the same, as it is not able to show any exemption or exception.
“In such a view of the matter, I have to necessarily issue directions to the TNPSC to publish the marks,’’ the judge said and accordingly gave the direction.