What is the exact number of vacancies for visually impaired persons in civil services exams since 1996, the Delhi High Court has sought to know from the Centre?
A bench of justices S Muralidhar and Talwant Singh has directed the central government to give details regarding the backlog vacancies for persons with disabilities, particularly visually impaired, from 1996 onwards.
The bench passed the order on a batch of petitions while examining the alleged discrepancies in the vacancies for visually challenged persons in civil services exams, conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC).
The court issued the directions noting that there were two charts regarding the exact number of vacancies -- one obtained through the Right to Information Act and relied by advocate Rajanish Kumar Jha, representing one of the petitioners and the other filed by the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT).
The bench in its September 11 order also directed advocate Jha to place on record a note explaining what according to him are the accurate number of vacancies that have been available for being earmarked for persons with disabilities generally, and in particular for those who are visually impaired.
The court will further hear the matter on November 5.
According to Jha, the petitions were filed by the candidates who would have been appointed had the Centre done proper implementation of reservation for visually impaired persons as per the Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995.
"There is a huge backlog of vacancies from 1996 onwards that is required to be filled up by eligible candidates who happen to be visually challenged," the petitions said.
However, the Centre denied the allegations and filed a separate list of vacancies, claiming that the appointments were made accordingly.
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