Promotion Through 'Limited Dept Competitive Exam(LDCE)' Can't Be Equated With Normal Promotion : Supreme Court
The Supreme Court recently distinguished between normal promotions and promotions through Limited Department Competitive Exams(LDCE). LDCE, being a competitive selection process, allows for accelerated promotions based on merit, and the criterias are specific to the competitive examination rather than regular promotions.The Court observed “a distinction has to be drawn between a...
The Supreme Court recently distinguished between normal promotions and promotions through Limited Department Competitive Exams(LDCE). LDCE, being a competitive selection process, allows for accelerated promotions based on merit, and the criterias are specific to the competitive examination rather than regular promotions.
The Court observed “a distinction has to be drawn between a normal promotion and a promotion by selection through LDCE. Promotion by selection through LDCE vis-à-vis competitive examination is a facility or a chance given for out of their promotion without waiting for the normal course of promotion. It in effect is selection through competitive examination within the limited category of candidates and cannot be equated with normal promotion. This being the position, the argument that regular promotion criteria had to be applied with regard to medical fitness even in the matter of selection through LDCE is not acceptable.”
The Supreme Court bench comprising Justices Abhay S. Oka and Justice Pankaj Mithal was hearing an appeal against the Delhi HC judgment which dismissed the appellant's petition to quash the medical examination result which declared him medically unfit for the post of Sub Inspector.
The appellant, a Constable (GD) with the BSF since April 4, 2012, sought promotion to the post of Sub-Inspector (GD) through LDCE 2018-19. The eligibility conditions, including a SHAPE-I medical category qualification, were clearly outlined in the advertisement. The LDCE comprised five stages, with the final stage requiring candidates to undergo detailed medical examination to ensure they were medically fit for the post.
The appellant was medically examined on December 23, 2019, where he was found medically unfit. A board of 3 doctors upon review on February 27, 2020, also confirmed the earlier findings. The appellant approached the Delhi HC challenging the medical report, which rejected his petition. Aggrieved by the same, the appellant moved to the Supreme Court.
The Court noted that the appellant was never declared medically fit for the Sub-Inspector (GD) post after the LDCE process commenced. While the appellant met the SHAPE-I category, it was only a prerequisite for applying to the post. The appellant failed to qualify for stage V, the detailed medical examination, as required by the LDCE scheme.
The Court observed “The appellant had undergone routine annual medical check-up as a constable and was declared in medical category SHAPE-I, which was the eligibility condition for applying to the post of Sub-Inspector (GD) through LDCE. It was not a part of the examination process for selection. The appellant was never declared medically fit. He never qualified stage V which consisted of a detailed medical examination.”
Therefore, the Supreme Court dismissed the appeal since the appellant did not successfully qualify for all five stages of the LDCE for the Sub-Inspector (GD) post.
Case title: Pavnesh Kumar v. Union of India
Citation: 2023 LiveLaw (SC) 1026