PIL against appointment of ICAR DG; HC seeks Centre reply

New Delhi, Aug 17 (PTI) Delhi High Court today sought theCentre’s response on a PIL challenging the appointment of aperson as the Secretary of Department of Agricultural Researchand Education as well as the Director General of ICAR. A bench of Chief Justice G Rohini and Justice SangitaDhingra Sehgal was hearing a petition alleging that TrilochanMohapatra, Director of Indian Agricultural Research Institute(IARI), was appointed to the two posts despite not satisfyingthe eligibility norms and without applying for the positions. Taking note of the issues raised in the petition, thecourt asked the authorities concerned to file a shortaffidavit within four weeks with regard to the avermentsraised in the plea. It also asked them to show on August 30, the next date ofhearing, the relevant rules as per which the appointment wasmade. The petitioner, Jai Singh Chauhan, has contended that asper the advertisement issued regarding the posts, an applicantshould have at least 25 years of experience in the field ofagricultural research or education, out of which at least fiveyears should be in Research Management Position (RMP). In his plea, filed through advocate Saqib, Chauhan hasalleged that Mohapatra only has 23 years of total experienceand 3.5 yrs of RMP experience. The petitioner has also claimed that as per informationobtained by him under RTI, even the Search-cum-SelectionCommittee had not shortlisted Mohapatra for the posts. The petition seeks directions from the court "declaringthe selection and appointment of respondent no.4 (Mohapatra)to the post of Secretary, Department of Agricultural Researchand Education cum Director General (ICAR) as null and void,illegal and non-est in law." PTI HMP PPSARC

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