Volume 3 Issue 23 - December 01, 2005

Guwahati H. C. directs Nagaland to extend reservation for disabled to include higher posts

D.N.I.S. News Network – In a boost to the nascent disability movement in the North-East, the Guwahati High Court has directed the Government of Nagaland to extend reservation entitled to disabled people in the Government jobs to include higher positions which hitherto have been confined to ‘C’ (e.g. typist) and ‘D’ (e.g. peons) category jobs..

Justice I. A. Ansari gave the above direction in a case involving hearing impaired Victor Vero and the Government of Nagaland. The petitioner contended that he has been denied his rights under the Disability Act 1995, on account of the failure of the State Government to fulfill its obligations under the Act. Victor had been selected and given appointment on a contract basis as a lecturer in English at the Zunheboto College in Nagaland.

In 2003, around 73 posts of lecturers, including eight for English, were lying vacant in Nagaland. Under the Disability Act at least three percent of these posts should have been reserved for disabled. The Union Government and some of the State Governments have formally identified posts of lecturers as suitable for disabled people. However, most states in the northeast region have lagged in emulating this example.

The petitioner contended that despite being the eligible applicant with a disability he did not get an appointed, as the State Government had failed to carry out the exercise of earmarking reservation, thus effectively denying him rights stipulated under the Act.

Justice Ansari strongly criticised the Government of Nagaland for not having “applied its mind properly” and for failing to conduct any “real and meaningful exercise” with regard to the provisions of the Disability Act, 1995.

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