Justice Biswajit Basu of the high court on Friday accepted a petition challenging the validity of Rule 17 of the West Bengal School Service Commission Act, 2016, that empowers the commission to cancel a candidate’s recommendation for appointment.
The WBSSC recently cancelled the recommendations for appointment of 618 Class IX and X teachers of government-aided secondary schools after it was found that they had secured jobs through manipulation of marks.
The recommendations were cancelled in exercise of the power conferred upon the commission under Rule 17 of the WBSSC Act. Justice Basu will hear the case on April 3. He asked the SSC to file an affidavit stating its stand on the contention of the two petitioners, both advocates of the high court.
The petitioners contended that Rule 17 of the WBSSC Act was ultra vires to the Constitution and should be struck down.
Advocate Anindya Lahiri, who appeared for the petitioners, said: “The WBSSC has the right to cancel a recommendation for appointment only if the candidate is found to have forged any document. For instance, if a candidate gets a job by furnishing fake academic certificates and this is detected after his appointment as a teacher, the SSC can cancel the recommendation. The commission cannot cancel a recommendation because of its own fault.”
A WBSSC official, however, said the rules also state a candidate will be disqualified if the commission wrongly issues recommendation of appointment to him or her.
On March 13, the commission had cancelled the recommendation of appointment of 618 candidates on the ground of irregularities in their appointments.