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Court confirms 12 additional Delhi judge interviews, hears writ re DJS 2014 mess

Congratulations to the new 12!
Congratulations to the new 12!
The Delhi Judicial Service (DJS) recruitment committee will interview, within four weeks, the 12 new candidates who crossed the exam’s cut-off marks on a re-evaluation. The re-evaluation was part of a judicial inquiry on fairness in the conduct of the DJS 2014.

A writ challenging the DJS 2014 was heard in the Supreme Court today and the Delhi high court did not oppose the recommendations contained in the report of former Supreme Court justice PV Reddy. According to Reddy’s report, submitted during the last hearing of the case last week, almost all of the top 200-ranked candidates in the DJS 2014 mains examination should have scored more than the marks they were allotted on first evaluation.

A bench of justices Dipak Misra and Shiva Kirti Singh ordered that the committee which had conducted the recruitment interviews for the original 15 selected candidates in DJS 2014, will conduct the interviews for the 12 new candidates eligible for interview after Reddy’s re-evaluation.

Reddy’s report is not yet public. The bench said it will think over making the report pubic, when urged by the petitioners to reveal it in the interest of transparency and fairness, as it does not raise security or privacy concerns.

In its order the bench said it will extract the part of the report which contains the names of the 12 newly selected candidates. The order will be available later today.

A source close to the litigation told Legally India that Centre for Public Interest Litigation’s (CPIL) counsel Prashant Bhushan, and petitioner Sonal Gupta's counsel senior advocate Sanjay Hegde briefed by advocate Anas Tanwir Siddiqui, argued in court that some structural reforms should be made in the DJS exam – such as, candidates should mark their answer choices in the Optical Mark Recognition (OMR) sheets with a pen and not a pencil. The source said that justice Shiva Kirti Singh responded to Bhushan’s argument by observing that the high court should implement this step even without the Supreme Court’s order, in the interest of fairness and transparency.

The case will next be heard on 28 April.

The DJS 2014 exam had been marred with allegations of unfairness, including a breakdown of the toppers of the exam, the number of candidates who failed and a series of other discrepancies unearthed by candidates, as reported by Legally India. This led to the Supreme Court appointing Reddy to inquire into the exam’s conduct.

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