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Educational qualification is a valid ground for classification between persons of the same class in matters of promotion - Supreme Court   Sep 21, 2021

The Supreme Court, in the case of Chandan Bannerjee v Chandan Prakash Ghosh, summarised the following following  principles in the of promotions based on educational qualifications : 

(i) Classification between persons must not produce artificial inequalities. The classification must be founded on a reasonable basis and must bear nexus to the object and purpose sought to be achieved to pass the muster of Articles 14 and 16; 

(ii) Judicial review in matters of classification is limited to a determination of whether the classification is reasonable and bears a nexus to the object sought to be achieved. Courts cannot indulge in a mathematical evaluation of the basis of classification or replace the wisdom of the legislature or its delegate with their own;

(iii) Generally speaking, educational qualification is a valid ground for classification between persons of the same class in matters of promotion and is not violative of Articles 14 and 16 of the Constitution; 

(iv) Persons drawn from different sources and integrated into a common class can be differentiated on grounds of educational qualification for the purpose of promotion, where this bears a nexus with the efficiency required in the promotional post;

(v) Educational qualification may be used for introducing quotas for promotion for a certain class of persons; or may even be used to restrict promotion entirely to one class, to the exclusion of others;

(vi) Educational qualification may be used as a criterion for classification for promotion to increase administrative efficiency at the higher posts; and

(vii) However, a classification made on grounds of educational qualification should bear nexus to the purpose of the classification or the extent of  differences in qualifications.

Copy of the judgement is attached   



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