Volume 3 Issue 10 - May 15, 2005

Assam Government agrees to demand for multiple exam venues for disabled candidates

DNIS News Network - The Assam Government has agreed to a demand by candidates with disabilities for holding recruitment tests and interviews for government posts at district headquarter-level, following a P.I.L. moved by them in the High Court.

Advocate Jyotirmoy Roy, who filed the Public Interest Litigation (P.I.L.) on behalf of the aspirants, contended that the move by the State Social Welfare Department to conduct tests for recruitment in the department at a single venue would pose hardships to candidates with disabilities. Moreover, it was against the spirit of the Disability Act, 1995, as it calls for decentralisation of such processes.

The department plans to fill up around 660 posts in Grades III and IV, including backlog vacancies. The last recruitment was held in 1995, when about 100 posts were filled up. A two-member division bench of Justice D. Biswas and Justice H.N. Sharma had admitted the P.I.L. on 12 April.

During the second hearing on 9 May, a two-member division bench comprising Chief Justice B.K. Roy and Justice A.H. Saikia cited the above response from the government. The bench noted that the main contention of the petitioners was to hold the tests at the district headquarters, and it has been considered and accepted by the government. In our view, no cause of action survives for having further judicial review. The P.I.L. is disposed of accordingly, expressing hope and trust in the government that it will give due advertisement in the media about the test, the bench said.

Jyotirmoy Roy, who belongs to Disability Rights Law Network (D.R.L.N), Disability Law Unit-Northeast (D.L.U), said the court order would go a long way in reducing the hardships faced by these candidates, and ensuring greater participation in the process.

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