STATE TIMES NEWS JAMMU: A Division Bench (DB) of the J&K High Court (Jammu Wing) comprising Justice Dhiraj Singh Thakur and Justice Sindhu Sharma on Tuesday dismissed the Letters Patent Appeal (LPA) filed by the University of Jammu against the Judgment dated May 17, 2019 passed by the Single Judge (First Puisne Judge Justice Rajesh Bindal) who had allowed a writ petition filed by Priyanka Arya, wife of Dr. Satyapriya Arya, resident of F-6, 101, Rohini, Sector-15, New Delhi who despite recommendations in her favour by the seven Members Selection Committee headed by the Vice-Chancellor had been denied appointment by the Jammu University for the post of Assistant Professor in the Department of Sanskrit under Open Merit Category and instead of appointing her the Jammu University had re-advertised the aforesaid post vide Advertisement Notice No.Adm/TW/C&R/17/2053-73 dated November 30, 2017 without finalizing the selection process initiated vide advertisement Notice No.Adm/TW(C&R)/16/1642-92 dated April 18, 2016 in which petitioner/private respondent Priyanka Arya was a candidate and was shown at Serial No.1 in the merit list. After hearing Advocate Wasim Sadiq Nargal appearing for University of Jammu and Advocate Sheikh Shakeel Ahmed with Advocates Sheikh Najeeb Ashraf, Rahul Raina, Supriya Chouhan, M. Zulkarnain Chowdhary appearing for the private respondent/ petitioner Priyanka Arya, the Division Bench in the open court did not agree with the contentions of Advocate Nargal and observed in the open court that there is no error in the findings recorded by the Single Judge. Advocate W.S. Nargal appearing for University of Jammu strenuously argued that the Single Judge has appreciated the controversy in a narrow compass and has not gone into the facts in its entirety wherein, element of bias has been proved beyond shadow of doubt. Advocate Nargal further submitted that the Apex Court in its various pronouncements has held that merely figuring in the select list does not ipso-facto vests right in favour of the selected candidate to be appointed and merely that the petitioner was figuring in the select list does not give a right of being appointed, more particularly when element of bias was proved. Advocate Nargal further submitted that the entire selection process was vitiated as one of the candidates Dr. Babua Narayan Mishra was getting special attention from an expert under whom he was pursuing his PhD and in view of detection of this fact the decision was taken by the University to re-advertise the post. Upon this, Advocate Ahmed submitted that the Single Judge did not fall in any error while appreciating the controversy as there was no allegation against Priyanka or any of the Members of the Selection Committee and the controversial candidate namely Dr. Babua Narayan Mishra was merely in the waiting list. “The petitioner secured 76.40 marks whereas the candidate in the waiting list had secured merely 72.00 marks and there were two more candidates who had secured 72.60 and 72.40 marks but they were kept below the waiting list candidate Dr. Babua Narayan Mishra”, he submitted. Advocate Ahmed submitted that because of biasness of one of the experts towards one of the candidates entire selection process cannot be cancelled especially when that candidate has not been selected. Advocate Ahmed further submitted that the petitioner had been selected on merit without there being any biasness. He submitted that the act of the University in cancelling the selection and going for re-advertisement was actuated with malafides. After considering the submissions of both the sides, the Division Bench dismissed the LPA filed by University of Jammu at the very threshold and upheld the Judgment passed by the Single Judge thus paving way for the appointment of the private respondent/petitioner as Assistant Professor in the Department of Sanskrit, University of Jammu.
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