AHMEDABAD: The Gujarat High Court on Monday called "illegal and perverse" the decision of the state public service commission to deny a Scheduled Caste woman candidate appointment as per her first preference despite not availing the benefits of reservation and securing 43rd rank in a 2019 competitive exam after appearing in the general category.
The petitioner moved the High Court after Gujarat Public Service Commission (GPSC) recommended her for the post of assistant commissioner of sales tax, which was her 3rd preference, while recommending a woman from the general category, who got 110th rank, to the post of deputy superintendent of police, which was the first preference of the petitioner.
Justice AS Supehia directed GPSC to issue an appointment order to the petitioner for the post of DySP, while relying on a recent HC order which stated that all women, irrespective of which category they belong, are entitled to compete for posts reserved for women under the general category.
The GPSC said petitioner Roshni Solanki was not granted her first choice on the ground that she had availed the benefit of relaxation in age/cut-off marks in preliminary or main written exam as per a government resolution dated July 23, 2004.
The court, in its order, however, said, The aforesaid reason is absolutely ill-conceived, since there was no need for the petitioner to claim reservation since she was already satisfying the criteria of general category women candidate. The respondents have not produced any material on record to show the petitioner had sought reservation. Hence, the reason for which she was denied the appointment as per her first preference is illegal and perverse."
Solanki's petitioner Chetan Pandya said she was 33 years old and, hence, did not avail of any age relaxation under the reservation for SC candidates.
Further, she secured 477.75 marks in the main written exam, whereas the cut-off for general female candidate was 442.50, so there was no question of availing relaxation in cut-off marks either, he added.
The HC said the government resolution (GR), dated July 23, 2004, does not apply to the petitioner as she did not avail any relaxation being a member of a Scheduled Caste or women candidate of reserved category.