SRINAGAR: The Jammu and Kashmir High Court on Friday disposed a writ petition challenging the KAS-2016 selection list and directed the J&K government to treat the petition as representation and process it in accordance with law within a period of four weeks.
Advocate Azhar-ul-Amin representing Public Service Commission stated in the court that KAS examination is scheduled to take place in the month of November and government will consider the petition before the examination and dispatched orders to the petitioners.
The Jammu and Kashmir Public Service Commission (JKPSC), on August 9, issued a notification following the controversy over wrong answer keys shown against 24 questions in the preliminary examination to Kashmir Administrative Service. It declared 429 out of 6925 qualified candidates as unqualified, citing that the candidates could not make the revised cut-off merit of 277.275 marks after applying revised answer keys.
The High Court stayed the notification by J&KPSC regarding the new list of candidates.
Advocate Arif Sikander Mir, counsel representing the petitioners – Hidayat Ahmad Mir and others – said, “It was against Supreme Court guidelines that the KAS aspirants who were in the first list and dropped from the second list. Earlier, the cut off was 270.77 marks and after revaluation, they have decided to take the cut-off to 277.275 marks. As such, all the candidates who have secured between 270 and 277 marks are out. As per Supreme Court guidelines, they cannot fix new cut-off.
Contending that the apex court has categorically stated that “nothing can be done with rules that have retrospective effect”, the counsel argued the commission had done “revaluation – as additional or subtraction is revaluation and under rules, revaluation is not permitted.”
In an affidavit filed before the Jammu wing of the high court, he said that the J&KPSC was “on record” that all discrepancies were corrected before first result was declared.
The J&KPSC had issued the fresh prelims list after the aggrieved candidates filed an RTI on March 24. During inspection of OMR sheets, the answer keys of general studies and political science were exhibited without authority and against rule, the notification reads.
Amid hue and cry, the commission kept preliminary result in abeyance and notification for KAS main examination was withdrawn.