TNPSC aspirants file appeals against order upholding Tamil eligibility GO

The first bench comprising of Acting Chief Justice R Mahadevan and Justice Mohammed Shaffiq initially dismissed the appeals observing that the court cannot interfere with the government’s policy decision.
Express illustration
Express illustration

CHENNAI: The Madras High Court will hear the appeals filed by government job aspirants challenging a single judge’s recent order upholding the legality of the 2021 G.O. making a score of 40% in the Tamil eligibility test in Part-A paper compulsory for recruitment to Tamil Nadu Public Service Commission’s (TNPSC) Group-IV services.

The first bench comprising of Acting Chief Justice R Mahadevan and Justice Mohammed Shaffiq initially dismissed the appeals observing that the court cannot interfere with the government’s policy decision. However, the bench reversed the decision and decided to take it up for arguments on June 11, after senior counsel Nalini Chidambaram raised certain key points including the constitutional validity of the 2021 G.O. and the 2024 notification for recruitment.

Chidambaram noted that for all the combined services, including Group-I, only the Tamil eligibility test is conducted, except for the Group-IV combined services, for which an eligibility-cum-scoring test is held. The petitioners would have no grievance if the mark is computed but they aggrieved over the compulsory 40% score since they studied in English-medium, she said.

“This G.O. is ultra vires the Section 40 of Persons Studied in Tamil Medium (PSTM) Act, under which only 20% of the posts were reserved for PSTM candidates. We have no objection to that. But they have gone beyond it saying that 100% of the posts are reserved for Tamil-medium students by removing the general English test. That’s why we are aggrieved,” Chidambaram told the court.

She also questioned the legality of reserving 2,000 posts for women, out of the 6,000 or so in Group-IV.

The appeals were filed by ten job aspirants, including S Nithesh, challenging the May 30, 2024 order passed by a single judge who upheld the legality of a 2021 G.O. making a score of 40% in the Tamil eligibility test in Part-A paper compulsory for recruitment to Group-IV services and the consequent notification issued by TNPSC on January 30, 2024, to fill 6,244 vacancies falling under Group-IV services.

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