Selection Process Indispensable: Service Law – Promotion
On 18/02/2021, a division bench of Hon’ble Supreme Court of India in Civil Appeal No. 325 of 2021 titled Rajesh Kumar Singh & Ors. Vs. The State of Uttar Pradesh & Ors., has upheld Rules 5(c) & 10 of the Uttar Pradesh Police Motor Transport Unit Subordinate Officers Service Rules, 2015.
Rule 5 (c) provides for appointment to the post of Head Constable Motor Transport by selection from amongst Constable Drivers and Head Constable Drivers as per the procedure prescribed in appendix to the Rules. Rule 10 prescribes the procedure for selection and appointment to the post of Head Constable. Rule 5 and 10 of the 2015 Rules were primarily challenged on the ground that the Appellants are forced to undergo a selection process for appointment to the post of Head Constable Motor Transport [which has the same pay scale as Head Constable Drivers].
The main grievance of the Appellant was “that they have already undergone a selection process for their lateral movement as Constable Drivers. It is impermissible to make them to go through yet another selection process for appointment to the post of Head Constable Motor Transport. According to the Appellants, all Constable Drivers should be eligible to be promoted either as Head Constable Drivers or as Head Constable Motor Transport on the basis of seniority without going through any selection process.” Referring to the appendix to the Rules, the Appellants submitted that there is nothing highly technical about the post of Head Constable Motor Transport.
The impugned order of the Hon’ble High Court was upheld by observing that: – “The selection process is mandated due to the posts of Head Constable Motor Transport being highly technical. The Rules are neither discriminatory nor arbitrary. Constable Drivers can be promoted on the basis of seniority to Head Constable Drivers. If they desire to be appointed as Head Constable Motor Transport, then they have to go through selection process. No interference with the judgment of the High Court is warranted.”