The Madhya Pradesh High Court on Tuesday directed the Madhya Pradesh Public Service Commission to allow Non-Domicile Category candidates to apply and appear for State Engineering Services Exam, 2021.
The division bench of Justice S.A. Dharmadhikari and Justice Vishal Mishra further directed the MPPSC to make adequate amendments to the application process to facilitate the registration of Non-Domicile Category candidates –
In view of the aforesaid submissions made by learned counsel for the parties and with a view to provide equal opportunity to all concerned, it is directed that all the candidates not belonging to the State of Madhya Pradesh will be permitted to participate in the competitive examination in respect of State Engineering Services Examination, 2021 for which the Madhya Pradesh Public Service Commission shall make adequate amendment in the website and permit these candidates to fill up the application forms. If the need arises the Madhya Pradesh Public Service Commission shall consider and notify a new date for filing up the application forms giving them atleast seven days' further time to do the needful and thereafter notify a fresh date for conducting the examination.
Facts of the Case
The Petitioners, who were students, filed the writ petition challenging the legality and validity of the impugned gazette notification dated 30.12.2021, whereby an amendment has been incorporated in the Madhya Pradesh Lok Seva (Anusuchit Jatiyon, Anusuchit Janjatiyon Aur Pichda Vargon Ke Liye Arakshan Sanshodhan Adhiniyam, 2019), corollary to which, the reservation for OBC category has been increased from 14% to 27%. The Petitioners were further seeking directions of the Court to reopen the submission of application forms for candidates not belonging to the State of Madhya Pradesh and to extend the examination date from 22.05.2022 to any other date for giving proper opportunity to the Non-Domicile Category candidates.
The Petitioners argued before the Court that equality of opportunity cannot be made dependent upon where a citizen resides. They also pointed out that the MPPSC in various other examinations has already permitted the candidates outside the State of Madhya Pradesh to participate in the same. With regard to the date of the examination, the Petitioner submitted that the MPPSC has been extending it from time to time, and therefore, the Petitioners may also be permitted to appear in the examination.
Per contra, the State submitted that the advertisement was issued on 30.12.2021 and the last date to submit the application was 01.03.2022. It was argued that despite the last date of submission being extended from time to time, the Petitioners did not voice their grievance and that now they were estopped from appearing in the respective examination at the said belated stage. Therefore, it was prayed that the petition being bereft of merits and substance, the same was liable to be dismissed.
Considering the submissions of the parties and documents on record, the Court directed MPPSC to open the application process for the Non-Domicile Category.
The matter will be listed next in the week commencing 13.06.2022.
Case Title: SHEELENDRA KUMAR AND OTHERS Vs THE STATE OF MADHYA PRADESH AND OTHERS