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Biswajit   27 August 2022

Clarification on examination, merit list, selection, recommendation and seniority

Clarification on Examination, Merit List, Selection, Recommendation and Seniority of selected candidates through Govt. recruiting agencies/SSC/RRB/UPSC : 

(1) What is the overall process of recruitment by recruiting agencies/UPSC ? 

(i) Examination (Interview / written test & Interview) (ii) Merit List (iii) Selection (iv) Recommendation.

 (2) What is Examination ? 

Commission conducts Examination through written test and interview or sometime interview only.

 (3) What is Merit list? 

After personality test, candidates will be arranged in the order of merit as determined by the aggregate marks finally awarded to each candidate. This is termed as "Merit list". ( Ref. UPSC Circular No.8/32/2011-R(C&P) dated 3.11.2011 , Civil Services Examination Rules, Engineering Services Examination Rules) 

(4) What is selection? 

Commission conducts selection of candidates by placing them in Main list and Reserve list/Waiting list . (i) After merit list was prepared, commission recommends the candidates with respect to numbers of unreserved vacancies(UR) purely on Merit basis i.e in order of aggregate marks. For filling up the above said unreserved vacancies(UR), commission recommends all categories candidates , General , SC, ST, OBC purely on Merit/marks basis, without any relaxation. (ii)After that, commission recommends the reserve categories belongs to SC ,ST and OBC candidates against numbers of reserve vacancies by relaxing general qualifying standard. Please note, the reserve categories candidates, belongs to SC,ST, OBC, who have not avail any relaxation, have scored general qualifying marks will not be recommended against vacancies advertised for reservation of SC, ST, OBC. (iii) Further, commission maintains a reserve list/waiting list of candidates which will include candidates from general and reserved categories ranking in order of merit below the each category's last recommended candidate

 (5) What is recommendation?  

Commission recommends the candidates against the number of vacancies category wise ( through main list) and then from reserve list/waiting list against the non joining candidates of the respective categories.

 (6) Is Selection and recommendation have same meaning? Ans : No. Because all the candidates selected in selection process will not be recommended . As example, few candidates of Reserve panel may not be recommended when no more vacancies ,due to non joining of candidates, be created latter on.

 (7) All the selected candidates were recommended or not? 

Ans : No. Few candidates selected and were placed reserve list may not be recommended if no more vacancies due to nonjoining of main list latter created. Sometimes, court order against a candidate/category and also antecedent issue , selected candidate/candidates may not be recommended.

 (8) Is Main list earlier selection and Reserve list is latter selection?

 Ans : No. Reserve list/Waiting list got already selected with Main list. But reserve list was not published out to public at that time. It is operated on receipt of formal request from Department/Ministry. Hence, all the candidates of main list and reserve list are from same selection. 

(9) How seniority are fixed of all the recommended candidates? 

Seniority will be determined in order of merit in a selection i.e in order of aggregate marks finally awarded to the candidates. 

(10) Can Waiting list candidates have better seniority than main list?

 The inter se seniority of the candidates of main list and reserve list/waiting list will be determined based on the aggregate marks of the candidates revealed by UPSC. For example, General category candidates having higher marks than main list reserve categories belongs to SC ST OBC, will be placed higher in seniority as per their merit positions. Hence, seniority list of all the candidates including reserve list/ waiting list will be prepared in order of marks.

 (11) Is seniority of a candidate dependent on order of recommendation by commission? 

Ans. No. Recommendation of candidates in a selection dependent on various factors, like vacancies of a category, antecedent issue, even some time court cases against a candidate, court case on a category ( UR SC ST OBC) . Only Merit/ Marks are yardstick of seniority of the candidates in a particular selection. 

(12) Will the vacancies filled up by the reserve list/ waiting list be treated as fresh vacancies?? 

Ans: No Vacancies, caused by non - joining of the candidates, which were filled up by reserve list should not be treated as fresh vacancies. Ref DOPT order

(13) Question : They / reserve panel candidates were not Born how they can get Seniority at that time ?

Ans : Candidates from reserve panel already were born.

Born means in which respect?? Date of advertisement or date of examination or date of appointment after fullfil ment of all criteria of the overall selection procedure for the vacancy advertised or date of joining ?

Date of joining is not considered for seniority of Directly recruited candidates for the batch of a particular vacancy advertised by UPSC as per Dopt OMs .

Vacancy is filled from the reserve panel( Waiting list) recommended by the UPSC against the same recruitment notification shall not be treated as a fresh vacancy and belongs to the same batch of recruited candidates. ( As per DoPT OM DOP&T’S OM 41019/18/97 - Estt. (B), dated 13 June 2000).

Joining of candidates depends on various formalities , antecedent verification , medical etc. For direct recruitment, Merit of the candidates in the examination / particular batch is only criteria of seniority.

Candidate cannot be faulted for his delayed appointment as it was for reasons beyond his control or for that matter beyond the control of any of the Respondents herein.The list of selected candidates from main list was only provisional and not the final list of appointment for the particular vacancy advertised and not the final list of overall selection process, and their selection was subject to the conditions laid down . Hence, if any candidate did not fulfill any condition mentioned therein viz., if the person’s selection did not withstand Police verification, medical fitness and verification of all required documents by the respondents would be cancelled.

Hence, in a overall selection process, a candidate placed in Main list but failed in further selection criteria like medical , antacedent may be considered that he was ultimately not got selected, failed , not fit, and never filled the vacancy raised by that advertisement.Further, Non willingness of candidates after qualifying the UPSC exam by Main panel /1st list and non willingness to take part in the examination of antacedent, medical verification may be considered failed in the overall selection process and he was ultimately not got selected, failed in selection , not fit, and never filled the vacancy raised by that advertisement .

Petitioner was qualified the exam and was also available along with the main list candidates . Petitioner Infact a victim of the circumstances that arose at the relevant time / victim of circumstances of overall process of final selection and appointment when he qualified in the examination. (Ref . One HC order)

( Ref. By the way, date of joining was not considered by respondents for the prepared seniority list by them , see date of joining of all candidates and their Seniority)


(14) Questions : Selection of reserve panel was not 1st attempt and reserve panel (waiting list)selection is second attempt :


And : All candidates are from same attempt of the examination and interview.


Candidates selected by reserve panel cannot be considered by fresh vacancy or carry forward vacancy as per Dopt OM. They are selected in the original vacancy in place of non joining/ non interested main panel candidates or candidates who are not qualified in verification stage like medical and police antecedent verification.


Hence, 1st attempt or 2nt attempt logic is a wrong depiction for the Direct recruitment candidates in a batch/ same examination.


If any court orders with respect to above terms is existing, that is for case specific situation but not universal.




 3 Replies

P. Venu (Advocate)     27 August 2022

The posting is an examination question paper than a query. You may seek the relevant information from the concerned Public Information Officer.

mohan   21 December 2022

Honorable CAT, Bangalore  Bench, O.A./698/2019 case filed by  RAMIREDDY GANGIREDDY  and  O.A./920/2019, Case filed by Kiran B. 

Both instructed the ESIC to revise seniority list and fix the seniority of all the candidates irrspective of Main list ,  Waiting list/reserve panel , date of joining as per Marks secured in the selection/examination.

Sudhir Kumar, Advocate (Advocate)     22 December 2022

OA O.A./1715/2017  is based on an earlier decided case in O.A./130/2020 which seems identical in this case. Other two cases  of Bangalore Bench quoted by you also express similar stand. What you had been waiting for so far.

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