Supreme Court Ruling on Eligibility of Army Personnel: A Landmark Decision

The Supreme Court has made a landmark decision regarding the eligibility of Army personnel in Rajasthan Civil Services, impacting candidates like Laxman Singh. This decision will shape the future of applications and category changes within the state services. Let’s delve into the details of this significant ruling and its implications on various stakeholders.


  • An advertisement was published on 18 June, 2013 inviting applications for various posts in the Rajasthan State and Subordinate Services.
  • On 10 July, 2014, a Press Note was issued canceling the examination due to irregularities noticed by the Commission.
  • A Press Note on 12 November, 2014 allowed candidates to make corrections in their online application forms and change categories after payment of Rs.100.
  • The last date for submission of application forms was 31 July, 2013, and the preliminary examination took place on 26 October, 2013.
  • Corrigendum issued on 24 June, 2013 increased the number of posts to 990 from the initially advertised 233 in State Services and 490 in Subordinate Services.
  • One of the writ petitioners, Laxman Singh, retired on 31 July, 2014, but applied for a change of status from General Category to Ex-servicemen Category following the Press Note dated 12 November, 2014.
  • Laxman Singh’s writ petition was dismissed on 9 November, 2016.
  • Appeal on 26 May, 2017 set aside the earlier order.
  • The Press Note was found to shift the date of eligibility.

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  • The amendment in the Rajasthan Civil Services (Absorption of Ex-servicemen) Rules, 1988, allows candidates retiring within the next year to apply in the category of Ex-servicemen.
  • The intention behind the Press Note was to correct errors in the application forms, not to shift the date of eligibility.
  • Candidates were only allowed to make corrections in their submitted application forms, not submit fresh applications.
  • Candidates who were not eligible on the last date of application submission cannot be considered eligible based on the corrections allowed in the Press Note.

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  • The High Court erred in allowing candidates to become eligible under the guise of correcting mistakes in the application forms.
  • The Press Note was specifically issued for correcting mistakes or changing categories in the application forms.
  • Candidates were not allowed to apply afresh based on the Press Note.
  • The eligibility date could not be shifted based on the Press Note as it was only for corrections or category changes.
  • The argument raised by the respondents’ counsel does not have merit.
  • The argument actually supports the appellants’ claim that Army personnel retiring within one year were not eligible before the May 21, 2019 amendment.
  • The May 21, 2019 amendment made Army personnel retiring within a year eligible for State Services for the first time.
  • The amendment is not retrospective and confers a new right to personnel retiring within a year.
  • The Division Bench’s order is set aside as it cannot be sustained.

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  • Army personnel appointed and joined as Ex-servicemen based on High Court order will continue in their positions
  • No new candidates will be appointed based on the High Court order
  • Appeals allowed by the Supreme Court


Case Number: C.A. No.-008146-008146 / 2019

Click here to read/download original judgement

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