Prayagraj, June 3: The Allahabad High Court on Wednesday stayed the appointment of 69,000 assistant basic teachers in Uttar Pradesh.

A Lucknow bench of the high court fixed the next of hearing on July 12, The Hindustan Times reported.

Justice Alok Mathur’s order comes days after the Supreme Court sought the UP government’s reply on pleas challenging the high court verdict, which had upheld the state’s decision to keep higher cut-off marks for these appointments.

The top court had on May 21 asked the state government to explain the process adopted for the appointments through a chart.

A bench of Justices U U Lalit, M M Shantanagoudar and Vineet Saran had initially declined to interfere with the high court verdict. But it later modified its order and issued notice to the state government, posting the matter for further hearing on July 6.

It asked the Uttar Pradesh government to explain why it changed the earlier criteria of 45 per cent cut-off marks for the general category and 40 per cent for the reserved category. The apex court sought a detailed reply before July 6.

The SC had said the matter required a detailed hearing as there were many parties and it would be better if the pleas are adjourned till open court hearings resume.

Several petitions, including those by individuals and Uttar Pradesh Prathmik Shiksha Mitra Association, had been filed challenging the May 6 decision of the Lucknow bench of Allahabad High Court.

In its May 6 verdict, the high court had directed the state government to complete within the next three months the process for appointment of 69,000 assistant basic teachers in Uttar Pradesh.

The process was almost already complete on the strength of the interim directions of the division bench issued on May 29 last year and only the result was to be declared.

The division bench had earlier set aside the single bench order that had quashed the government order fixing 65 per cent qualifying marks for the general category candidates and 60 percent for the reserved category candidates.

The single bench had said that the minimum cut-off would be 45 per cent for general and 40 per cent for reserved candidates.

On July 25, 2017, the top court had asked the state government to cancel the recruitment of 1,37,517 appointments through teacher eligibility test (TET) but give them the benefit of experience in the recruitment process.

Six months later, the government issued the order for a written examination for assistant teachers’ posts for the first time to hire 69,000 teachers.

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