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This is what the Supreme Court said about the Delhi Judicial Services exam


The Supreme Court of India today disposed of the petitions relating to the Delhi Judicial Service Exam of 2014. The top court also issued a number of directions to improve the existing examination system.

The matter was heard by a Bench of Justices Dipak Misra and Rohinton Fali Nariman. Senior Advocate Sanjay Hegde and advocate Prashant Bhushan assisted by advocateSidharth K Garg, represented the petitioners while Additional Solicitor GeneralManinder Singh and advocate ADN Rao appeared for the Delhi High Court.

When the matter was last heard, Prashant Bhushan had suggested that guidelines be framed by the Supreme Court for conducting such exams so that such controversies don’t arise in future.

He had also recommended the following:

“a) In the Preliminary exams, the OMR sheets be ordered to be filled up in pen and not pencil

b) In the preliminary exam result, the names of candidate be mentioned and not omitted as done in the new 2015 notification by the respondent

c) In checking of the mains papers, the procedure laid down by the 3 Supreme Court judgment be followed, in letter and spirit. The 3 judgments are Sanjay Singh [(2007) 3 SCC 720], Prashant Ramesh Chakkarwar [(2013) 12 SCC 489] and Sujasha Mukherji [2015 AIR (SCW) 1582]

d) The candidates be provided a copy of their answer scripts under the RTI and as per two Supreme Court judgments

e) Arbitrary absolute cut offs for interview qualification be replaced with ranking method

f) The DJS exam be held every year like the UPSC exam.”

The Court had asked the Delhi High Court to respond to these suggestions.

Today, the Delhi High Court told the Supreme Court that they have accepted two of the suggestions – (a) and (d). Accordingly, OMR sheets will, henceforth, have to be filled up using pens and not pencil. Further, candidates will be entitled to get a photocopy of their answer scripts under the RTI Act.

The Court further suggested that the Delhi High Court should comply with suggestions (b) and (c).

“..we think the following suggestions should also be followed by the High Court. They are :-

(i) In the Preliminary examination, the names of successful candidates be mentioned.

(ii)In checking of the mains papers, the procedure laid down in Sanjay Singh & Anr. Vs. U.P. Public Service 6 Commission, Allahabad & Anr. (2007) 3 SCC 720, Prashant Ramesh Chakkarwar Vs. U.P.S.C. & Ors. (2013) 12 SCC 489 and Sujasha Mukherji 2015 AIR SCW 1582 shall be kept in view.”

The case had come to the Supreme Court in August last year when the Centre for PIL filed a petition alleging arbitrary valuation, and selection of candidates in the Delhi Judicial Service Exam, 2014. The court had issued notice in the case on August 4.

On December 14 that year, the Court had appointed former Supreme Court judge and former Chairman of Law Commission, Justice P Venkatarama Reddy to revaluate the answer sheets of those candidates who had cleared the preliminary examination of the DJS, 2014.

Justice Reddy had submitted a report to the court in sealed cover on March 4, 2016.  In his report, the former Supreme Court judge had concluded that he did not find anything unfair in the evaluation.

However, after re-valuation, 12 more candidates stood qualified for interview. The Court had accepted this report and directed the Delhi High Court to act pursuant to the report. 12 more candidates were then called for interview. 11 of them had attended the interview and all of them had qualified for DJS.

Read the order of the court below

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