SC asks HC to check if KPSC exam was clean

SC asks HC to check if KPSC exam was clean

SC asks HC to check if KPSC exam was clean

The Supreme Court on Wednesday asked the Karnataka High Court to consider afresh if the written examinations conducted for selecting 362 gazetted probationers by the KPSC in 2011 batch suffered from any malpractice.

A bench of Justices Adarsh Kumar Goel and R F Nariman noted that this aspect whether the written (main) examinations were also tainted has not been gone into by the high court while it has come out that the interview suffered from malpractices as brought out by the CID report.

The court asked the HC to determine the issue preferably within three months.

The top court also maintained that if there is suspicion of linkage between the evaluators and the candidates, it would be difficult to restore the whole process. However, the court felt that the HC should have segregated the process of viva voce from the rest of the examinations instead of cancelling the entire notification.

Advocate S N Bhat, appearing for the KPSC, contended that the main examination was foolproof as the answer scripts were evaluated after bar coding, and the candidates were also given copies of the answer scripts under the RTI Act.

On this, the bench said, "Re-evaluation of the answer scripts would debunk everything. We want to be sure that the process is free from any taint."

The top court, however, said, "We have upheld the HC order of March 9 quashing the selection list prepared after the interview, which was alleged to be vitiated due to large scale irregularities."

The court passed its order after hearing detailed arguments from senior advocates V Giri, Guru Krishna Kumar, Raju Ramachandran and Sajan Poovayya, representing a batch of petitions filed by advocate Nishanth Patil and others on behalf of Avinash C and other selected candidates against the high court judgement. Senior advocate H N Nagmohan Das and others represented a batch of unsuccessful candidates.

The HC had quashed the directions issued by the KAT on October 19, 2016 to issue appointment letters to the successful candidates. Relying upon the 2013 CID report, the state government had on August 14, 2014 withdrawn its 2011 notification for requisition of administrative officers. However, it did not challenge the KAT's direction to issue appointment letters.

The state government reiterated its stand taken before the HC that the order of the Karnataka Administrative Tribunal was just and proper. Further it also suggested that a committee can be set up consisting of a judicial member to undertake the exercise of segregating the tainted and untainted candidates and affording every candidate an opportunity of hearing. The state government also agreed for holding the interviews afresh.

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