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Thousands of qualified differently-abled persons who were denied employment in electricity board appointed

Disability rights poster.
Image used for representational purposes only.
Date : 17/05/2018

Pardeep Kumar vs. Rakesh Kumar Bawa and another

Pardeep Kumar and thousands of other orthopedically disabled people were allowed to join as apprentices for the post of line men by the department of electricity board. This training was for two years and during training they were getting only Rs 1,000 per month. Before inducting them as an apprentice, their physical standards were verified by a unit of Government of India. These persons agreed to undergo the said apprenticeship since this is one of the qualification required for the said post. When the post were advertised in 2011, none of the disabled persons was found to be eligible for the said post on the plea that the job was not safe for the disabled. There were 5,000 posts, out of which 150 posts were reserved for the disabled — 3% of the total.The plea was for the selection process to be amended and the stand of the department to be quashed.

The Petitioner challenged the selection list and stated that since the Petitioners have completed the apprenticeship and were not declared unfit during the apprenticeship, the stand of the department needed to be quashed. The writ petition was dismissed where the Court accepted the stand of the department. The Petitioner then challenged the order of the Writ petition before the double bench and this was allowed.

The petitioners pray that since only a few petitioners have approached before the Double Bench, relief should be granted to other similar situated disabled persons who had not approached the double bench.

The respondents had understood the words used in the order dated 7.05.2015 “similarly-placed differently-abled persons” as the persons having the same percentage of disability as that of the petitioners and therefore, appointment had not been given to 10 such persons.

However, there is no upper limit of disability provided in The Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1999 the respondents have denied the appointment to similarly situated persons is misconceived and hence, directions is issued to them to offer appointment to those persons also whose names are mentioned in the recent application.

The department approached the Supreme Court on various misguiding points which was ultimately dismissed. But despite the order the department was not willing to give appointment to disabled persons. The petitioners moved a contempt petition and ultimately all the disabled, irrespective of whether they had approached to the court or not, have been given appointment if they applied and were eligible for the said post.

Pardeep Kumar vs. Rakesh Kumar Bawa

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