Pramod Kumar Singh vs The State Of Uttar Pradesh on 16 March, 2021


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Supreme Court of India

Pramod Kumar Singh vs The State Of Uttar Pradesh on 16 March, 2021

Author: Uday Umesh Lalit

Bench: Uday Umesh Lalit, Hon’Ble Ms. Banerjee, K.M. Joseph

          Writ Petition (Civil)No. 465 of 2020
          Pramod Kumar Singh & Ors. Vs. State of Uttar Pradesh & Ors.
                                                                                                        1

                                                                                                Reportable
                                         IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
                                           CIVIL ORIGINAL JURISDICTION


                                       WRIT PETITION (CIVIL)NO. 465 OF 2020


                          PRAMOD KUMAR SINGH AND ORS.                                  …Petitioners


                                                               Versus


                          STATE OF UTTAR PRADESH AND ORS.                              …Respondents




                                                         JUDGMENT

Uday Umesh Lalit, J.

1. This petition under Article 32 of the Constitution of India prays for
following reliefs: –

A. Issue a Writ, Order or Direction in the nature of Mandamus
directing the Respondents to consider the Petitioners for
Signature Not Verified

Digitally signed by Dr.
Mukesh Nasa
appointment to the post of Constable PAC & Fireman seats
Date: 2021.03.16
13:09:47 IST
Reason:

meant for General Category Male Candidates in PAC &
Fireman Posts which remained unfilled till date; and
Writ Petition (Civil)No. 465 of 2020
Pramod Kumar Singh & Ors. Vs. State of Uttar Pradesh & Ors.
2

B. Issue a Writ, Order or Direction in the nature of Mandamus
directing the Respondents to rectify the final select list dated
11.11.2019 in terms of three parameters i.e. merit, preference
and reservation.

1.1 The principal grounds raised in the petition are:-

“I. Because there are 958 seats where candidates who made
it in original select list in their reserve category in Constable
(Civil) were wrongly shifted to open category on different
cadre i.e. PAC and Fireman without actually changing their
cadre as they are all working on the said post (Constable
Civil) for last 3 years. Had the aforesaid 958 seats were not
wrongly overlapped then the Petitioners would have made
their place in the list published on 11.11.2019 by the Board.

II. Because, admittedly, the Respondents had filled up only
1650 seats out of 2016 seats meant for male general category
candidates in various select list till date in Constable PAC
Post and 446 seats out of 1038 seats meant for male general
category candidates in various select list till date in
Constable Fireman Post.”

2. The facts leading to the filing of this petition, in brief, are as under:-

A) By issuing an advertisement on 20.06.2013, selection process was

undertaken to fill up 41610 posts of Police Constables [U.P. Civil

Police/Provincial Armed Constabulary (PAC)/Fireman]. The

petitioners had participated in the selection process as candidates

of General Category.

Writ Petition (Civil)No. 465 of 2020
Pramod Kumar Singh & Ors. Vs. State of Uttar Pradesh & Ors.
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B) After the requisite examinations, results were declared on

16.07.2015, in which 38315 candidates were successful. Thus, as

on that date, there were vacancies which were not filled as no

suitable candidates were available.

C) In Saket Kumar and ors. Vs. State of U.P. and Ors.1, the High

Court of Judicature at Allahabad, was concerned with the process

of selection for Sub-Inspectors in U.P. Police, which process was

going on simultaneously with the instant selection. The High

Court dealt with the issue where the candidates had used blades or

whiteners while answering their answer papers of the main

examination. By its order dated 29.05.2015, the High Court had

disqualified all such candidates and directed that their names be

deleted from the selection list.

In the appeal arising therefrom, this Court in its decision

in Hanuman Dutt Shukla and Ors. Vs. State of U.P. and

1
2015 SCC OnLine Allahabad 1250 (Writ.A.No. 67782 of 2014 etc.)
Writ Petition (Civil)No. 465 of 2020
Pramod Kumar Singh & Ors. Vs. State of Uttar Pradesh & Ors.
4

Others2, held that those candidates who had used blades or

whiteners ought not to have been disqualified. However, by that

time, the process of selection, in terms of the decision of the High

Court in Saket Kumar1, had gone ahead and the seniority list was

already re-worked in terms of said decision. This Court,

therefore, observed that the candidates who had been selected as

a result of directions in Saket Kumar1, should not be thrown out

from the process of selection, but those who had used blades or

whiteners be given the advantage in a notional selection. It was

also observed that the additional number of candidates so selected

should be reckoned as against additional posts and should not be

taken to be the part of the original posts for selection.

D) The same principles were adopted in the selection process for

Police Constables and consequently, the candidates who had used

blades or whiteners were considered in the instant process of

selection. The selection list was re-worked and it was found that

2
(2018) 16 SCC 447
Writ Petition (Civil)No. 465 of 2020
Pramod Kumar Singh & Ors. Vs. State of Uttar Pradesh & Ors.
5

4429 candidates were entitled to be given the advantage in terms

of law declared in Hanuman Dutt Shukla2.

E) In the meantime, decisions were rendered by the High Court in

Ashish Kumar Pandey and 24 others vs. State of U.P and 29

others3 and Upendra and others vs. State of U.P. and others4,

touching upon the issue of horizontal reservation with which we

are not presently concerned, except for the fact that the seats

remaining vacant as a result of non-availability of candidates for

the concerned horizontal reservation categories, became available

for the same selection process.

F) In the instant case concerning selection of police constables,

about 2312 vacancies had remained unfilled and additionally,

there were 982 vacancies arising out of causes such as non-

reporting of the selected candidates. In the circumstances, this

Court in its Order dated 24.07.2019 passed in IA No. 103934 of

2018 and connected applications in Special Leave Petition

3
2016 SCC OnLine ALL 187 (Writ A. No. 37599 of 2015)
4
2018 (7) ADJ 37 : Writ C. No. 3417 of 2016
Writ Petition (Civil)No. 465 of 2020
Pramod Kumar Singh & Ors. Vs. State of Uttar Pradesh & Ors.
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(Civil) No. 20015 of 2018 (Ashish Kumar Yadav and ors. v.

State of Uttar Pradesh and ors.) issued following directions:-

“It is accepted by the learned counsel for the State
that the State did not undertake any process of
selection in respect of those 2312 vacancies. In
the circumstances it is directed:

A) The State shall within a month from today
complete the entire process of selection in
respect of 2312 vacancies strictly in
accordance with law.

B) The State shall follow the principle of
reservation while filling up these 2312
vacancies.

C) While filling up these vacancies, the State
shall adhere to the minimum required
qualifying marks as devised during the
process of selection but subject to this, the
State shall consider all eligible candidates and
go strictly in order of merit.

D) The State shall before the next date of
hearing, shall file a list of all the selected
candidates.

It is also accepted that apart from these 2312
vacancies, there are still 982 vacancies to be filled
up in the original selection.”
Writ Petition (Civil)No. 465 of 2020
Pramod Kumar Singh & Ors. Vs. State of Uttar Pradesh & Ors.
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G) Therefore, further process of selection for 32955 posts was

undertaken and the results were declared on 11.11.2019. The

breakup of said 3295 posts was as under:

                          Sl.     Category      Civil         PAC         Fireman      Total
                          No.                   Police
                           1        Open          721           473          712        1906
                           2        OBC           615           77           39         731
                           3         SC           511           59           31         601
                           4         ST            48            6            3          57
                                    Total        1895           615          785        3295



H) In the affidavit of compliance filed on behalf of the State

Government following details were submitted: –

“E. Details of result of selected 3295 candidates as per
Hon’ble Supreme Court’s order

In compliance of above order of Hon’ble Court
following lists and details of last selected candidates
are attached herewith.

(I) List-1- candidates selected in open category-
1906

This list contains –

(a) The names of candidates who have already been
selected in their respective vertical category

5
(according to the aforesaid Order dated 24.07.2019, the vacancies would be 3294, being total
of 2312+982. However, according to the State, the actual figure was 3295)
Writ Petition (Civil)No. 465 of 2020
Pramod Kumar Singh & Ors. Vs. State of Uttar Pradesh & Ors.
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(OBC/SC/ST) but presently find their positions in
open category after redrawing the merit on the
basis of their merit irrespective of their social
category and gender.

(b) New candidates purely on the basis of their merit
irrespective of their social category.

                             The composition of list as follows –

                             (A)- Already selected candidates-          1252
                                  OBC                                   1118
                                  SC                                    0132
                                  ST                                    0002
                             (B)- Now selected candidates-
                                 Male Gen.                              0461
                                 Male Gen. DFF-                         0005
                                 Female Gen.-                           0187
                                 Female Gen. DFF-                       0001
                                 Total Male-                            0466
                                 Total Female-                          0188
                             Grand Total                                0654

A copy of the List I is annexed hereto and marked as
Annexure A-1

F. List-2 – candidates selected in OBC category –
1849 (1118+731)

Since 1118 candidates belonging to OBC category,
have already been selected and find their position
in present open category list due to their higher
merit hence 1118 unselected OBC candidates have
been selected in lieu of selected candidates and 731
candidates have been selected afresh as against
their respective 731 vacancies. It is submitted that
this list contains 1849 names.

Writ Petition (Civil)No. 465 of 2020
Pramod Kumar Singh & Ors. Vs. State of Uttar Pradesh & Ors.
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A copy of the List II is annexed hereto and marked as
Annexure A-2

G. List-3- the candidates selected in SC category –
733 (132+601)

Since 132 candidates belonging to SC category,
have already been selected and find their position
in present open category list due to their higher
merit so 132 unselected SC candidates have been
selected in lieu of selected candidates and 601
candidates have been selected afresh as against
their respective 601 vacancies. It is submitted that
this list contains 733 names.

A copy of the List III is annexed hereto and marked as
Annexure A-3

H. List-IV- candidates selected in ST category-59
(02+57)

Since 02 candidates, belonging to ST category,
have already been selected and find their position in
present open category list due to their higher merit,
so 02 unselected ST candidates have been selected
in lieu of selected candidates and 57 candidates
have been selected afresh as against their respective
57 vacancies. It is submitted that this list contains
59 names.

A copy of the List IV is annexed hereto and marked as
Annexure-A-4”

3. The present Writ Petition has been filed submitting inter alia that

certain candidates coming from ‘Reserved Categories’, who were initially

selected against Reserved Categories’ seats, were now shown against the
Writ Petition (Civil)No. 465 of 2020
Pramod Kumar Singh & Ors. Vs. State of Uttar Pradesh & Ors.
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‘Open Category’ in the list published on 11.11.2019 and, thus, the chances

of ‘Open Category’ candidates to that extent stood prejudiced. According to

the petitioners, there should not have been any adjustment of the candidates

who were already selected in ‘Reserved Categories’ and all those seats should

have been made available to the ‘Open Category’. In this light, the principal

grounds as quoted hereinabove are raised and the prayer for re-working of

the select list dated 11.11.2019 is made.

4. In the affidavit-in-reply filed in the present matter, marks obtained by

all the petitioners have been set out. The State has given details about the last

selected candidates in various categories and has stated that the last selected

person in ‘General Male Category’ was one Pawan Singh (having secured

313.616 marks). Except the petitioners at serial Nos. 22 and 24, who had

secured 313.616 marks, none of the 48 petitioners had secured marks in excess

of 313.616. It is also stated that since large number of candidates had secured

exactly 313.616 marks, tiebreaker principle was adopted in which these two

petitioners got eliminated.

5. We have heard Mr. P. S. Patwalia, learned Senior Advocate for the

petitioners, Mr. Vinod Diwakar, learned Additional Advocate General for the
Writ Petition (Civil)No. 465 of 2020
Pramod Kumar Singh & Ors. Vs. State of Uttar Pradesh & Ors.
11

State and Mr. B. P. Patil and Mr. Vinay Navare, learned Senior Advocates for

Intervenors.

6. The process adopted by the State Government as is discernable from

the affidavit of compliance shows that List-I dealt with the candidates selected

in ‘Open Category’ while Lists II, III and IV pertained to the candidates

selected in ‘OBC/SC/ST categories’ respectively. List-I comprised of two

kinds of candidates. First, those who were initially selected in their respective

vertical reserved categories (OBC/SC/ST), but depending on their merit, were

found entitled to be put in ‘Open Category’; and secondly, new candidates

who were selected on the basis of their merit in various categories. Break up

of 1906 candidates who were considered in ‘Open Category’ was thus clearly

set out.

7. It is not the grievance of the petitioners that any candidate who had

secured marks lesser than the petitioners, has been selected. The challenge is

to the shifting of candidates, who were earlier selected against posts meant for

reserved categories, to the open category.

8. Selection in respect of 3295 posts was undertaken in accordance with

the directions issued by this Court in Ashish Kumar Yadav and Ors. vs. State
Writ Petition (Civil)No. 465 of 2020
Pramod Kumar Singh & Ors. Vs. State of Uttar Pradesh & Ors.
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of Uttar Pradesh and Ors. (supra) and the State Government and its

functionaries were obliged to go strictly in order of merit and apply the

principle of reservation. With the availability of 3295 additional posts, in the

re-working exercise, if the candidates who were already selected against

reserved posts were entitled to be considered against open category posts, that

exercise cannot be termed as illegal or invalid on any count. These 3295 posts

were part of the same selection process initiated in 2013 for filling up 41610

posts and as such the adjustment was rightly done by the State.

9. We, therefore, see no merit in this petition which is accordingly

dismissed.

……………………….J.

[Uday Umesh Lalit]

……………………….J.

[S. Ravindra Bhat]

……………………….J.

[Hrishikesh Roy]
New Delhi;

March 16, 2021.



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