The Court has no power under Article 226 to check whether academic qualification certificates are in consonance with the recruitment rules: Jammu and Kashmir High Court

In a situation where the academic qualification certificate is questioned by the selection/ appointing authority from the very existence and supported by the certificates of the Board of Technical Education, the learned Writ Court was required, for doing the substantial justice, to evolve a mechanism by virtue of which the genuineness of the certificates could have been ascertained by referring the matter to the Committee consisting of members from the concerned field. This was said in the case of J&K Service Selection Board V/s Ashiq Hussain Shah and others [CM no. 955/2020] by Mr Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey and Mr Justice Vinod Chatterji Koul in the High Court of Jammu and Kashmir

The facts of the case date back to 17.08.2019 when the Writ Court passed an order allowing the writ petition, filed by the respondents. Assailing the order of the Writ Court, the appellants filed an intra Court appeal.

The appellants contended that the impugned judgment is bad in law as the stand of the respondents has not been appreciated by the Writ Court. Secondly, it was contended that the conclusion arrived at by the Writ Court is incorrect as the same was solely based on the registration of the Institution when the dispute was entirely on the certificates in possession of the petitioners. It was further contended that the plea raised by the respondents/ petitioners before the Writ court that the verification report was submitted by the Board of Technical Education mechanically is nullified by the fact that even after the passing of the impugned judgment the Board reiterated its stand and went further on to add that neither their examinations have been conducted nor any certificate has been issued in this behalf.

The respondents contended that the impugned judgment is quite in consonance with law and the respondents have been discriminated by the appellants in the selection process in question as the candidates, who had obtained the certificates from the same Institution as that of the petitioners, have been considered which amounts to violation of fundamental rights of the petitioners guaranteed by the Constitution.

After perusing the findings of the Writ Court, the judges opined that “impugned judgment is bereft of reasons, material and the law. Merely because the institute which has, allegedly, issued the certificates in question, is a recognized Institute to impart training vis-à-vis certain trades including the one allegedly possessed by the respondents, does not ipso facto mean that the certificates produced on its name, without actually having been issued by it, are also genuine”.

Furthermore, it was said that the “court has no mechanism/ expertise available to check the veracity of the certificate that meets the requirements of the recruitment rules. The question that requires an answer, in the circumstances, would be as to whether the certificates in question are forged having been managed by the respondents of their own without having appeared in any examination in this behalf? To have the question answered the matter is required to be looked into by the Committee of the concerned field who will examine the said issue and frame their opinion accordingly”. Hence, the appeal was accepted and the impugned judgment was set aside.

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