Selection goof-up: Failed candidates turn toppers

Guwahati, Aug 31 : The social welfare department in Assam appointed assistant typists at a time when typewriters became history. But that isn't the reason why it has attracted the Gauhati High Court's rap. In 2005, the Social Welfare department had appointed four assistant typists in Assam's Nalbari district before realising it had only three vacancies. The fourth appointee, Bubul Sarma, approached the court last year after he was told to go.

Almost simultaneously, Majnur Ali of Kotpuha village in Nalbari district moved RTI to find out why he was denied a job after being third in the list of successful candidates.

RTI revealed selection test topper Haridhan Baishya and second-best Runumi Barman had failed their simple math test.

Runumi's father Balendra Nath Barman was also on the selection panel besides being the Child Development Project Officer (CDPO) of that area.

Another candidate — Kalpana Majumdar — was among the 15 shortlisted for the post of assistant typist but was mysteriously appointed as supervisor.

On August 20, Justice Biplab Kumar Sarma heard Bubul Sarma's petition and found that the Social Welfare department's defence did not match with the information culled via Ali's RTI application.

Pulling up Social Welfare Director N. Borgohain, Justice Sarma ordered a probe and entrusted it to Additional Assam Police chief BD Mishra. The report is expected by submitted by October. "This judgment will go a long way in undoing the wrong to the candidates who were denied their due," said the appellant's lawyer SK Das.