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SC seeks reply from UP on assistant basic teachers' appointments
TIWN
SC seeks reply from UP on assistant basic teachers' appointments
PHOTO : TIWN

New Delhi, May 21 (TIWN) The Supreme Court on Thursday sought a response from the Uttar Pradesh government on a batch of pleas challenging the Allahabad High Court verdict, which upheld the state government's decision of higher cut-off marks in connection with the appointment of 69,000 assistant basic teachers.

A bench comprising Justices U.U. Lalit, M.M. Shantanagoudar and Vineet Saran initially refused to interfere with the high court judgement, but later modified the order. The top court issued notice to the state and listed the matter for further hearing on July 6, and sought a reply before the hearing. The apex court observed it would be better to adjourn till open court hearings resume, as there are many parties involved in the litigation.

During the hearing on the matter, the top court asked the state to explain the filling up of vacancies through a chart and also put out a chronological sequence on the process undertaken for the appointments. Noting that the matter requires detailed hearing, it also sought explanation on the change in the criteria of 45 percent cut-off marks for the general category and 40 per cent for the reserved category.

Uttar Pradesh Prathmik Shiksha Mitra Association and several other parties have filed petitions challenging the May 6 high court verdict.

Senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, representing Ram Sharan Mauraya, contended before the court that the cut-off marks cannot be fixed after the examination, and this should have been done before holding the examination. He cited issues also involving the nature of contracts and changes made frequently in the appointment process.

Rohatgi argued that the changes in the cut-off was introduced after the January 6, 2019 examination -- 65 per cent from 45 percent for the general category and 60 from 40 percent per cent for the reserved category.

The bench replied that due to the cut-off, some of Shiksha Mitra examinees did not have required marks and as a result, they could not qualify. Rohtagi insisted the salary of Shiksha Mitras is very less and if earlier cut-off is retained, then many more people will get the chance.

Senior advocates Rajeev Dhavan, Dushyant Dave, C.A. Sundaram and other lawyers, representing another set of Shikhsa Mitras, insisted that the matter should not adjourned, as the issue will impact Lakhs of people.

Dhavan argued that exam results should be re-computed considering earlier cut-offs.

As the bench queried Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the state, on the change in the criteria of examination, Mehta replied Shikhsa Mitras want to ride on the back of meritorious candidates.

The May 6 verdict paved the way for completing the process for appointment of 69,000 assistant basic teachers in Uttar Pradesh, and the high court had asked the state to complete the process within three months.

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