Kerala HC comes to aid of diabetic disqualified for employment in Railways
Kochi, Feb 7 (IANS) The Kerala High Court has come to the aid of a candidate who was denied employment by the Indian Railways for a Ticket Examiner’s post after he was found to be a diabetic by the medical board.
“Merely citing a disease, one cannot be denied employment unless it is found that such a disease would have impact on his functional duties or responsibilities. Thus we dismiss this original petition,” the court said.
The Railway Medical Board, citing a circular issued by the Railways Ministry, found the applicant unfit since he has diabetes. The Tribunal could not consider the circular or reply filed by the Railways while the matter was heard and disposed of.
Thus, the Union of India and Railways approached the High Court seeking a fresh consideration of the issue.
Studying the circular, the court pointed out that the applicant could not be found unfit merely for the reason that he has diabetes or any other disease. It stated that the medical board has to determine whether a candidate is unfit or not after considering the nature of employment and held that a person cannot be found unfit merely for the reason that one has diabetes or any other disease.
“Merely stating that he is having diabetes, it cannot be said that he is unfit for the purpose of the job. The unfitness has to be found out with reference to the functions and duties to be discharged by the candidate. Without examining a candidate who is alleged to be a diabetic, with reference to the nature of job, he cannot be declared unfit for the job for which he has applied,” it said.
The court found that the medical report did not mention any reasons before disqualifying the applicant except that he has diabetes. It added that diabetes by itself would not disqualify a candidate from discharging his duties and accordingly, permitted the Railways to evaluate the medical condition of the applicant to find out whether the disease would materially or substantially impair him to be engaged as a ticket examiner or not.