New Delhi, Aug 10 (IANS) The Delhi High Court has issued notices to UPSC and others on a PIL that challenged a notification for the Civil Services (Preliminary) examinations on the ground that it did not provide for adequate reservation to differently-abled applicants as per statutory requirements.
A division bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Prateek Jalan, while admitting the petition filed by Sambhavana, a registered society for the specially-abled, issued notices to the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) and other respondents and sought their responses.
The court will hear the matter on August 31.
The petitioner alleged that the UPSC notification for the direct recruitment to 24 civil services of the Union of India had neglected completely or annihilated the mandatory minimum reservation for the differently-abled under statutory provisions.
The plea said that the notification is for direct recruitment of the differently-abled persons to “only 24 expected approximate vacancies” reserved for them under the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act 2016, (RPWD Act hereinafter) out of the 796 “approximate expected” vacancies mentioned therein.
It added that the unequal distribution of these vacancies among the five classes of disabilities is in complete violation of Section 34(1) of the RPWD Act.
Section 34(1) mandates a minimum four per cent reservation for the benchmark disabled of the total “vacancies” in the cadre strength in each group of posts meant to be filled with such disabled persons and further equal distribution of one (20 per cent) each among five classes of such persons, including the blind, deaf, locomotor affected, and multiple disabilities.
The plea contended that the violation of the aforesaid section had resulted in arbitrary and hostile discrimination against the differently-abled, despite Supreme Court judgments and the administrative procedures laid down in law.
The impugned examination notification wipes out Section 34 of the RPWD Act, 2016 for the differently-abled candidates, the plea claimed.
The PIL said that differently-abled candidates do not have the physical or economic wherewithal to withstand this annihilation of their statutory and constitutional rights to equal opportunity to a government job, even as two Ministries and a constitutional authority were tasked to take care that this does not happen.