W.P. (C) Nos. 993 of 2014, 356 of 2016, 708 of 2016, 1019 of 2015 and 270 of 2016. Case: Lisham Henthoibac and Ors. Vs The State of Manipur and Ors.. Manipur High Court

Case Number:W.P. (C) Nos. 993 of 2014, 356 of 2016, 708 of 2016, 1019 of 2015 and 270 of 2016
Party Name:Lisham Henthoibac and Ors. Vs The State of Manipur and Ors.
Counsel:For Appellant: R.K. Deepak, N. Mahendra, Advocates, H.S. Paonam, Sr. Advocate assisted by N. Bipin and D. Julius Riamei, Advocates and For Respondents: S. Nepolean, Govt. Advocate, I. Lalitkumar, Sr. Advocate assisted by Th. Rommel, D. Julius Riamei and Serto T. Kom, Advocates
Judges:Kh. Nobin Singh, J.
Issue:Constitution of India - Articles 14, 15, 16, 16(1), 16(4), 226, 315, 330, 332; Manipur Municipalities Act, 1994 - Section 3
Judgement Date:January 11, 2017
Court:Manipur High Court
 
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Judgment:

Kh. Nobin Singh, J.

1. Heard Shri R.K. Deepak, the learned counsel appearing for the petitioners in W.P.(C) No. 993 of 2014 & W.P.(C) No. 1019 of 2015; Shr N. Mahendra, learned counsel appearing for the petitioners in W.P.(C) No. 356 of 2016; Shri H.S Paonam, Senior Advocate assisted by Shri N. Bipin, Advocate, the learned counsels appearing for the petitioners in W.P.(C) No. 708 of 2016; Shri D. Julius Riamei, the learned counsel for the petitioners in W.P.(C) No. 207 of 2016; Shri S. Nepoleon, the learned Government Advocate appearing for the State Government in all the matters and Shri I. Lalitkumar, Senior Advocate assisted by Shri Th. Rommel, Advocate, the learned counsels appearing for the MPSC in W.P.(C) No. 1019 of 2015; Shri Serto T. Kom, the learned counsel appearing for the respondent No. 61 in W.P.(C) No. 993 of 2014 and Shri D. Julius Riamei, the learned counsel appearing for the respondent Nos. 4 to 60 in W.P.(C) No. 993 of 2014.

2. Since all the writ petitions, referred to hereinabove, have arisen out of a common set of facts, the same are being disposed of by this common judgment and order.

W.P.(C) No. 993 of 2014

3.1 Being aggrieved by the Advertisement dated 15-11-2014 and the Corrigendum dated 26-11-2014 issued by the Manipur Public Service Commission (hereinafter referred to as 'the MPSC'), the instant writ petition has been filed by the petitioners praying for quashing/setting aside them.

3.2 According to the petitioners, they are all Master Degree Holders, some of whom have passed the JRF/NET Examination in their respective subjects or the SLET conducted by the State Government while the others have earned Degree of Doctor of Philosophy and therefore, they are all qualified and eligible for appointment to the posts of Assistant Professor in the Government Colleges as per the Recruitment Rules and the UGC guidelines.

3.3 In its meeting held on 02-09-2014, the Cabinet, Government of Manipur approved the creation of as many as 418 posts of Assistant Professor for purpose of regularisation of the existing Part-time Lecturers in the Government Colleges apart from the approval being granted for filing up 285 vacant posts of Assistant Professor by way of direct recruitment through the MPSC. Pursuant to the said Cabinet decision, the MPSC issued the impugned Advertisement dated 15-11-2014 inviting applications from amongst the eligible candidates for appointment of 280 Assistant Professors in the Government Colleges by way of direct recruitment. The break-up of reservation quota is 58 posts for UR, 184 posts for ST, 20 posts for OBC (M), 15 posts for OBC (MP) and 3 posts for OBC (O) and a Corrigendum thereto was issued on 26-11-2014 notifying to include 3 posts for Locomotor (Palsy), 3 posts for Hearing Impairment and 3 posts for Visual Impairment in the Persons with Disabilities (PWD).

3.4 The break-up of the reservation quota in the impugned Advertisement is against the norms of the reservation policy of India as well as the State of Manipur and the State Government is not utilizing all the newly created posts for the appointment of Assistant Professors in the Government Colleges by direct recruitment through the MPSC. Accordingly, the petitioners submitted a memorandum dated 06-12-2014 to the Hon'ble Chief Minister, Manipur and a representation dated 06-12-2014 to the Chief Secretary, Manipur praying for utilizing all the existing vacant posts of Assistant Professor in the Government Colleges by direct recruitment through the MPSC only and not to regularize the services of the presently working Contract/Part-time Lecturers for the reason that doing that will be against the law of the land. No response thereof was received by the petitioners either from the Hon'ble Chief Minister or the Chief Secretary, Manipur.

3.5 The Government of Manipur had issued a Notification dated 17-05-2011 notifying the Manipur Reservation of Vacancies in Posts and Services (For Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes) Rules, 2011 (hereinafter referred to as 'the Manipur Reservation Rules, 2011') which provide for the reservation of 50 per cent quota of which 2 per cent is for SC, 31 per cent for ST and 17 per cent for OBC. While issuing the impugned advertisement, the State Government has violated the provisions of the said Manipur Reservation Rules, 2011 as well as the 50% rule laid down by the Hon'ble Supreme Court and being aggrieved by the impugned Advertisement, the instant writ petition has been filed by the petitioners.

3.6 Contesting the said writ petition, an affidavit-in-opposition on behalf of the respondent No. 1, the State Government has been filed raising two points as regards the justification of the impugned advertisement - one, the petitioners have not approached this Court with clean hands and as such, their writ petition deserves dismissal for concealment of material facts and two, the reservation of posts for the ST, SC and OBCs is not excessive because it was calculated on the basis of the total vacancies of 703 posts and not against 280 posts of Assistant Professor. The relevant paras of the said affidavit-in-opposition read as under:

2. That before submitting parawise reply to the writ petition the deponent craves leave of the Hon'ble Court for consideration of the maintainability of the writ petition. The deponent begs to state that all the petitioners except petitioner No. 11 have applied for the post of Assistant Professor as per the impugned Advertisement No. 15/2014 of Manipur Public Service Commission (MPSC, in short) dated 15.11.2014. The petitioners in the writ petition have intentionally concealed this fact for ulterior motive. The petitioners have not approached this Hon'ble Court with clean hand as such the writ petition deserves dismissal for concealment of material fact. It is submitted that one who seeks equity must come with clean hand.

As per information received from the MPSC the details of the petitioners, applied to the advertised posts of Assistant Professors, with their Roll Numbers are as follows:-

That all those petitioners who have appeared in the said screening/written test dated 27.10.2015 for recruitment to the post of Asstt. Professor as per the impugned advertisement have failed to qualify in the said screening/written test except the petitioners No. 7, 9, 10, 13, 14, 15, 16, 18 and 20. Further, it is to state that the personality test was also conducted as per the scheduled given by the MPSC and all those petitioners who have qualified in the screening/written test appeared in the said personality test.

5. That with regards to para No. 4 of the writ petition, the answering deponent denies the allegations made therein and submits that it is the decision of State Cabinet to approve the creation of 418 posts of part-time lecturers of Government Colleges and for filling up 285 vacant posts through Manipur Public Service Commission in its meeting held on 2.9.2014.

It is to submit that, accordingly, the respondent No. 3 vide letter No. 3/3-251/2014-UHE dated 29th October, 2014 submitted a proposal to the Manipur Public Service Commission with documents for filling up the 285 vacant posts of Assistant Professors in different subject of 28 Government Colleges including LMS Law College, HTT College and DM College of Teachers' Education through the Manipur Public Service Commission.

And thereafter, the Manipur Public Service Commission issued a Notification being No. 7/16/2014-MPSC(DR() dated 15.11.2014 inviting applications on prescribed forms from the qualified intending candidates for direct recruitment to the 280 vacant posts of Assistant Professors in different disciplines for filling vacancies in 28 (twenty eight) Government Colleges under Higher Education Department, Manipur.

6. That with reference to Para Nos. 5 and 6 of the wit petition, the answering deponent denies the allegations made therein and submits that reservation of the posts was made altogether in respect of 418 posts now held by part-time lecturers and 285 vacant posts out of which 280 was advertised. It is not only against 280 vacant posts. The reservation was made for all 703 posts for Government College Lecturers/Assistant ProfessOrs. The reason for calculation is that the General Category had excessively occupied the reserved posts meant for ST, SC and OBC. There is no excessive reservation for ST, SC and OBC.

7. That with reference to Para No. 7 of the writ petition, the answering deponent begs to state that the reservation of vacancies was made after following Government of Manipur Notification No. 9/1/91-DP (SC/ST) dated 17.5.2011 and Manipur Gazette 20.5.2011. There is no violation of any rules or notification.

8. That with reference to para No. 8 of the writ petition, the deponent denies the allegations that the reservation made in the impugned advertisement is against the reservation quota calculated on the total strength but not on the basis of advertised posts. It is submitted that a writ petition cannot be filed on apprehension as the petitioners stated that the present writ petition is filed on apprehension of commission of wrongful procedure. Further, it is submitted that there is no any bar on the part of the State in framing policy decision for regularization/absorption of its temporary employee according to law.

9. That with reference to Para Nos. 9 and 10 of the wit petition, the answering deponent begs to state that it is to reiterate that the reservation mentioned in the Advertisement dated 15.11.2014 issued by the MPSC was made not only for advertised 280 posts but together with the 418 posts which is presently held by the part-time lecturers. It is to submit that most of the part-time lecturers belong to the General Category and it mandates the government to maintain quota mean for each category. As such the allegation made in those paras of the writ petition is hereby denied.

The stand of the MPSC as indicated in its...

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