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HC relief for teacher aspirants

The high court on Friday asked the school service commission (SSC) to immediately call 77 candidates for pre-appointment counselling.

The petitioner candidates succeeded at all three stages of the screening for secondary schoolteachers in 2011 but are yet to get a call for counselling for an unspecified reason.

The SSC had conducted the test to fill up 46,000 posts of secondary schoolteachers.

The students’ lawyer, Subrata Mukhopadhyay, had earlier submitted in the court of Justice Ashok Das Adhikari: “My candidates had succeeded at all three stages of the test— teachers’ eligibility test, exam in the subject of choice and viva voce. Their names figured on the combined list comprising successful candidates belonging to the general, scheduled cast/scheduled tribe and other backward classes categories.”

Two rounds of counselling for candidates from the combined list have been held, the lawyer submitted. “Candidates whose marks were lower than my clients’ were called. But my clients were yet to get a call. The SSC is not taking any initiative to fill up the 16,000-odd posts still lying vacant.”

After hearing the plea, Justice Das Adhikari had directed the SSC twice to file affidavits and state whether the petitioners were eligible for counselling. The commission has not filed any affidavit.

When the case came up for hearing on Friday, the judge asked SSC lawyer Tapan Rakshit whether the petitioners were eligible for counselling or not. The lawyer said they were eligible. “Then why are you not calling them (for counselling)?” the judge asked. The lawyer replied: “They may be called in future.” The judge asked: “In future? When?” The lawyer said: “That we cannot say.”

The judge then ordered the commission to call the candidates for counselling immediately.