Coming down heavily on litigants for filling “frivolous and incoherent” petitions, the Jammu and Kashmir High Court has warned them of “serious consequences” for deliberate misrepresentation of facts.
A bench of Justice Sanjeev Kumar issued the warning while disposing of a bunch petitions, challenging selection of 398 junior KAS and other gazetted posts by erstwhile Jammu and Kashmir Public Service Commission, advertised in 2008.
“This Court in these petitions has been called upon to hold a roving enquiry into the false and incoherent pleas raised by the petitioners,” the court said in a 35-page judgment, announced after 79 days of reserving it.
The erstwhile JKPSC on 30 November 2008 had invited applications for 398 posts available at the gazette level in the State Civil Services—Junior Kashmir Administrative Service, Police Gazetted Service and Accounts Gazetted Service.
The petitioners had impugned the selection process in which they voluntarily participated without protest and demur and felt aggrieved only when they could not find their names in the select list, the court said.
“Filing of such litigation by the litigants, who have no scruples and its easy entertainment by the Courts has resulted in explosion of Court docket. This is thus, high time when the Courts start asserting and discouraging such litigation with heavy hands,” the court said, adding, “For the act of misrepresentation and raising of false, unsubstantiated and incoherent pleas, this Court may not examine other issues raised in these petitions, though, same have been aptly dealt with by the Public Service Commission in its reply affidavit.”
The court said that it was also worthy taking note that even if the selection of candidates was quashed, the petitioners would not be benefited in any manner.
“The petitioners, namely, Zahoor Ahmad Bhat and Arshad Nazir even went to the press with the forged information to tarnish the image and reputation of the Commission,” the court said.
After qualifying mains examinations, the petitioners were called for the interview but were not selected.
Some of them had challenged selection, alleging that some candidates have been awarded higher marks in the interview and some very less. Others had contended that Commission had “arbitrarily” reduced their marks in the optional subject by resorting to moderation, which ultimately impacted their merit in the mains examination.
The Commission on the other hand rebutted all the allegations with regard to the fairness of the selection and resort to the moderation in the optional paper of Kashmiri and Urdu literature.
“Despite the fact that petitioners were aware that the relative members had recused from the interview process on the dates their relatives were interviewed, they made unsubstantiated allegations to persuade the Court to hold the selection process unfair,’ the court said, adding, “The applications after applications were filed in these petitions to seek indulgence of this Court to collect the evidence in support of the unfounded allegations leveled by the petitioners.”
Referring to a specific allegation by the petitioners that the interview committee awarded 248 marks out of 250 with a view to favour some blue eyed persons, the court said it was again “proved to be a white lie.”
“With the intervention of this Court, the petitioners examined their answer scripts and could not find anything wrong with the process of evaluation. In that view of the matter, the attempt of the petitioners to somehow bring the Commission to disrepute and assail the selection process on imaginary and unsubstantiated grounds needs to be deprecated in strongest possible terms,” the court said. However, it took lenient view by not imposing “hefty costs on petitioners for being unemployed.”
“It is a fit case, where this Court would have imposed heavy exemplary costs on the petitioners for unnecessarily engaging the Court in futile litigation, but taking note of the fact that the petitioners are unemployed youth and may have made false, frivolous and unsubstantiated allegations out of frustration and to somehow maintain the petitions, I refrain from doing so but not without warning the petitioners in particular and the litigants in general that such deliberate misrepresentation of facts before Court would invite serious consequences,” the court added. (GNS)