Orissa High Court sets aside single judge order on SSB examination


CUTTACK: THE Orissa HC on Wednesday asked the State Selection Board (SSB) to impose exemplary punitive action against question-setters responsible for the fiasco involving the written examination conducted for filing up 833 posts of lecturers on March 10, 2019.

The direction came while the HC set aside a single judge’s order which had invalidated the written examination conducted by SSB for 81 posts of lecturer in History in non-government aided colleges of Odisha and ordered for fresh written examination.

Justice BR Sarangi had issued the order on December 3, 2019 after 20 applicants filed a petition alleging that a large chunk of the questions were wrong, ambiguous and out of course, or options were not given in a proper manner. The HC had issued a stay order on it when several writ appeals challenged Justice Sarangi’s order.

Disposing of the writ appeals on Wednesday, the HC observed that much of the confusion was created by the question-setters and the SSB should not stand to protect the erring persons but take exemplary punitive action against them to preserve the sanctity of the recruitment process. “Such callous approach is absolutely intolerable”, ruled the bench of Justice Sanju Panda and Justice SK Panigrahi.

It also ruled that re-examination is an unnecessary exercise that will cause major inconvenience to all applicants without much gain. “However, the SSB is at liberty to declare the results by preparing a fresh merit list of candidates in accordance with the report of the Expert Committee and recast the merit list on the basis of marks secured by them”, the bench said.