N. Neihsial, Administrative Member1. The applicant has filed this O.A. Under Section 19 of the Administrative Tribunals Act 1985, with the following reliefs:-“8.1 That the Hon’ble Tribunal be pleased to direct the respondents to re-evaluate O.M.R sheet of the applicant of written examination held on 30.11.2014 on the basis of correct answer key and to allot 2 and 2/3rd marks to the applicant against answer to question No.19 and 54 and thereby to give the applicant 48.34 marks in Written Examination and to allow the applicant to appear in Document Verification and Medical Test for selection and appointment to Gr.’D’ post against Notification No.02/2013(Gr-D).8.2 That the hon’ble Tribunal Among other he also al be pleased to direct the respondents to allot the applicant 48.34 marks instead of 45.67 marks and to appoint him to Group ‘D’ post pursuant to Employment Notification No.02/2013 (Gr-D).8.3 Any other relief of reliefs as the Hon’ble Tribunal may deem fit and proper, including the cost of the case.”2. The case was finally heard on 28.1.2020, after repeated adjournments.3. The facts of the case is that the applicant belongs to Schedule Caste community. In response to employment Notice No.02/2013 published by Railway Recruitment Cell, N.F. Railway, Guwahati. He appeared for selection and for appointment in Group-D post in N.F.Railway under Roll No.5413096706. He was declared successful in the written examination. He was allowed to appear in the Physical Efficiency Test (PET). However, he did not get any call letter for documents verification and medical test. Through TRI application No.E/DYCPO IR/N.F/RTI Act’05 dated 19.10.2016 the applicant has been supplied OMR answer sheet. According to him he should have secured 48.34 marks, against the 45.67 marks given to him. This was due to the wrong answer key in respect of question No. 19 and 54. Since the cut of marks for Schedule Caste candidates was 46.67 marks he should have been selected. Due to this mistake on the part of the respondent authorities in respect of question nos.19 and 54 he has been deprived for opportunity of being appointed as Group D.4. The respondent authorities filled their written statement on 18.7.2017. They did admitted that the cut off marks for Schedule Caste candidates was 46.67(normalized) while the mark secured by the applicant is the written test was 45.14(normalized). They also pointed out that the written examinations were conducted on four different dates i.e 02.11.2014, 09.11.2014, 16.11.2014, 23.11.2014 and 30.11.2014 at Siliguri, Alipurduar, Coochbehar, Guwahati and Tinsukia respectively. The question papers for each day consisted on 100 multiple choices (four) objective type questions to be answered in 90 minutes. There was also negative marking to the extent or 1/3rd mark for every wrong answer and evaluation was done thereafter. Since there were five different question papers for five different examination dates, normalization of marks was done as per the laid down formula to offset the relative degree or difficulty of questions for different dates.5. The respondent authorities also pointed out that the claim of the applicant regarding correction of answer keys of two questions at this distant date (01.12.2016) after finalization of the recruitment process and joining of the selected candidates is at belated stage. They also pointed out that the selected candidates are not made party in the present proceeding and decision in absence of the selected candidates will be in gross violation of principle of natural justice. Since the written examination was conducted at five different place and different dates any interference in the answer keys of any of the aforesaid question paper of the examination would change in the results of all examination dates and would have impact on the normalization process. In the written statement they also highlighted that the law is well settled by the Hon’ble Apex Court in this regard. The respondents authorities also stated that the change in the answer key at this stage it would be lead to flood gate of litigation which is deprecated by the Hon’ble Apex Court in series of decisions. The grounds urged by the applicant are therefore not at all sustainable in the eyes of law.6. The applicant also submitted rejoinder on 21.8.2017. He repeated his point of arguments that if in the answer key of the 2 questions has been corrected; he would have got 48.34 which he fell short of the cut off marks for Schedule Caste candidate of 46.67 marks against the 45.14 marks awarded to him. He also highlighted the ratio laid down by the Hon’ble Supreme Court in the case of Rajesh Kumar & Ors Vs.State of Bihar that answer scripts of the innocent parties, who have not in any manner contributed to the preparation of the erroneous key or the distorted result either by fraud or malpractice, shall be got re-evaluated on the basis of correct answer key prepared by the constituted committee and shall pick up their appointment on the basis of the fresh merit list drawn upon that basis, is very much applicable to the present fact situation of the case of applicant.7. On the other hand, the respondent authorities made available a copy of the adjudication of the Principal Bench of Cat, New Delhi in O.A.No.3246/2016 and M.A2871/2016 pronounced on 27.02.2019. We have gone through the Judgment of Hon’ble Principal Bench, CAT, New Delhi. It is seen that the case is exactly similar to this O.A, wherein the applicants seek reliefs claiming that they had answered correctly to the five questions, but the answer keys were wrong. The respondents were the same Railways; GM Northern Railways, New Delhi and Chairman, Railway Recruitment Cell, New Delhi. As such if the answer keys were to be correct, they would have got more marks sufficient to be declared selected. Herein, the applicant also relied on the decision of the Hon’ble Supreme Court in the case of Rajesh Kumar and Others Vs.State of Bihar and others, (2013) 4 SCC 690 and the order of this Tribunal in the case of Sushil Kumar Vs. BSNL through its Chairman cum Managing Director and ors.(O.A.No.75/2012).8. After considering both aspects of the submissions made by the rival parties, the O.A. has been dismissed by the Hon’ble CAT, Principal Bench citing the Hon’ble Supreme Court cases of Pramod Kumar Srivastava (supra) and recent judgment of Ram Vijay Singh (Supara).9. We have given detail hearing to both the parties. In addition to oral arguments, the learned counsel for the applicant Mr.S.Nath also submitted copies of judgments of Hon’ble Supreme Court in the case if Rajesh Kumar and other Vs.State of Bihar and others reported in (2013) 4 SCC 690 and Richal Vs. Rajasthan Public Service Commission, reported in (2018) 8 SCC 81, in support of his case.10. After due consideration, we have noted that the examination was conducted at 5 different dates. The question paper for each station and date was different involving recruitment process a total of 500 questions, because of which normalization process was done. We also noted that in this O.A other selected candidates were not made a party in the present proceedings. It is implied that the wrong answer key if any must have been faced by all candidat
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es (both selected/not selected) including the present applicant, in this kind of competitive examination. Moreover, the respondent’s authorities obviously do not have the provision for re-evaluation the answer sheet. The respondents also made available a copy of the 3rd Member judgments in O.A.No.75/2017 dated 13.11.2019 Guwahali Bench wherein the 3rd Member Hon’ble Mr. Justice L. Narasimha Reddy, Chairman of Hon’ble CAT, Principal Bench dismissed the said similar O.A.11. Keeping in view of the above, and the judicial pronouncement of the Principal Bench, CAT, New Delhi and also 3rd Member adjudication in response to the CAT, Guwahati Bench we are of the considered view that the case is devoid of merit and is liable to be dismissed. Accordingly, the O.A. is hereby dismissed. No order as to costs.