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J&K Sports Policy | Mere representation at national, international level doesn’t entitle a person to reservation: HC  

“The ‘Sports Quota’ also known as ‘Sports Representation’ is a policy devised by the Government and used by the educational institutions to reserve a particular percentage of seats or positions for individuals, who have achieved excellence in sports,”
04:14 AM May 08, 2024 IST | D A RASHID
j k sports policy   mere representation at national  international level doesn’t entitle a person to reservation  hc  
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Srinagar, May 7: The High Court of J&K and Ladakh on Tuesday ruled that mere representation at a National or International level does not entitle a person to the reservation under the J&K Sports Policy regardless of his performance, position, proficiency or talent.

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A bench of Justice Rajesh Sekhri said this while dismissing a petition by a candidate, S Sahil, who had questioned a communication dated October 9, 2023, wherein the Sports Council in response to a communication had conveyed to the Islamic University of Science and Technology, Awantipora that the candidate having single participation at the national level was not eligible for selection for PhD programme in civil engineering under the sports category for the academic session 2022-23.

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Consequently, the varsity had provisionally selected another candidate in the Open Merit Category vide notification dated October 30, 2023, for the PhD programme.

In his plea, Sahil had clanged both these communications.

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“The question which falls for consideration, in the present case, is whether every sportsperson with mere representation at a National or International level is entitled to the reservation under the J&K Sports Policy, regardless of his performance, position, proficiency or talent”, the court said.

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The answer to this question, it said, is emphatic “no”.

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The court observed that the legislative intent of the rule-making authority, was evident from the use of the words “outstanding” and “proficiency”, in the J&K Certification of Outstanding Proficiency in Sports Rules 2008 that reservation is available only to the sportspersons, who have not only achieved an outstanding performance but are proficient or have excelled in a particular sport or achieved or secured one of the first three positions or participated twice or more in the same discipline in the national championship to their credit.

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“The ‘Sports Quota’ also known as ‘Sports Representation’ is a policy devised by the Government and used by the educational institutions to reserve a particular percentage of seats or positions for individuals, who have achieved excellence in sports,” the court said.

“Clause 6.3.4 of the J&K Sports Policy cannot be read in isolation and if the said clause is read in conjunction with Rule 2(A)(ii) of Rules of 2008 read with Amended Rules of 2008, it is manifestly clear that petitioner is not eligible for selection under the Sports Category, for the simple reason that he has neither participated and secured one of first three positions in the individual events or the team event in a National championship,” the court said.

“Petitioner, in the present case, with a single representation in Ball Badminton at the National level has been rightly declared ineligible by respondent-Sports Council and denied admission by respondent-University (IUST) as he fails to meet the criteria laid down in the J&K Sports Policy and Rules of 2008 read with Amended rules of 2008,” the court said.

Declining Sahil’s plea, the court underscored that it did not find any illegality or impropriety in the communication dated October 9, 2023, of the Sports Council, under which, it was conveyed to the varsity that the petitioner was not eligible for selection under the sports category.  The court also said there was no illegality in the notification dated October 30, 2023, vide which the petitioner had been denied selection in the university.

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