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Nagaland Public Service Commission Vs. State of Nagaland & Ors.

[Civil Appeal No. 3864 of 2017 @ Special Leave Petition (C) No. 3290 of 2014]

[Civil Appeal No. 3862 of 2017 @ Special Leave Petition (C) No. 3289 of 2014]

KURIAN, J.

1. Leave granted.

2. The short dispute that arises for consideration in these two appeals is on the essential qualification for the post of Lecturer, Chemistry in the Higher Education Department in the State of Nagaland.

3. The prescribed qualification is M.Sc. in the subject concerned. The appellant, in the connected matter, is only M.Sc. in Biochemistry. It is the contention of the appellants that Biochemistry is Chemistry for all purposes.

4. We find it difficult to accept the submission. It may be seen from the advertisement itself for Item No. 10, that for the post of Lecturer in Chemistry, what is prescribed is only M.Sc. without any further description. It is a post in the Department of Information Technology and Technical Education. But for the post of Lecturer in Chemistry in Higher Education, the prescribed qualification, being M.Sc. in the subject concerned, namely, Chemistry itself, the appellant - Nagaland Public Service Commission is not right in completing selection based on the opinion sought from the expert that Biochemistry is Chemistry for all purposes.

5. Qualification is something to be prescribed by the State Government, the appointing authority. The Commission is only to go by the qualification and it cannot improve upon that. Since the State does not have a case that the appellant possesses the required qualification and rightly so, we find no merit in the appeals, which are, accordingly, dismissed.

6. However, dismissal of the appeals shall not stand in the way of the State Government amending the qualification in case of non-availability of the candidates from the same tribe, and making fresh selection in accordance with the new instructions which are said to have been issued by the State Government.

7. In case the appellant is otherwise eligible in terms of the fresh instructions issued by the State Government and in view of the mandatory reservation, we make it clear that it will be open to the State Government to relax the age of the appellant for the purpose of application.

No costs.

.......................J. [KURIAN JOSEPH]

.......................J. [R. BANUMATHI]

New Delhi;

March 09, 2017.


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