SC Judgment on Rejection of Candidate Acquitted of Serious Crime

What is the News?

The Supreme Court held that a public employer can reject a candidate if the candidate is unsuitable. Thus, a person acquitted of a serious crime merely on the benefit of the doubt can be rejected.

What was the case?
  • A man cleared the recruitment exam of a constable in the Rajasthan Police Service.
  • However, he was not appointed to the post. He was acquitted of murder after the witnesses turned hostile in Rajasthan in 2009.
Supreme Court Observations:
  • The Supreme Court observes that acquittal in a criminal case does not automatically qualify a candidate for appointment to the post.
  • The person should be honorably acquitted of a heinous crime and not on the benefit of the doubt. Only then is a person considered eligible for public employment.
  • An honorable acquittal is when the accused is acquitted after full consideration of the evidence. Also, if the prosecution miserably fails to prove the charges leveled against the accused.
  • However, if this parameter is not met, the acquittal is based on the benefit of the doubt.
  • The present case can hardly fall under the category of an honorable acquittal. The witnesses had turned hostile. Hence, the appointment was rejected.

Source: The Hindu


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