The Supreme court has paved the way for a candidate with bipolar disorder to become a Judge in the Delhi judicial services, adding that the ‘possibility of improvement’ in the health of the candidate would not disqualify him from getting the benefit of the relaxed standards for the quota for persons with disabilities.
The bench had taken note of the opinion expressed by the medical board that “there is nothing to indicate that he will not be able to discharge his responsibilities to the post of judicial officer for which he has been selected.”
The candidate had applied for the post of judicial officer in the Delhi lower judiciary in 2018 under the seat reserved for persons with disabilities.
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He was initially selected as the sole candidate in the “mental illness” category, as he had been issued a disability certificate in 2018, which would be valid till 2023.
His appointment was first challenged on grounds that he would not be capable of carrying out judicial work, and then, on grounds that he is medically “under remission” and on medication, which means that he cannot be considered “disabled”.
The bench of justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and MM Sundresh in November sent the matter before the medical board, with senior psychiatrists from AIIMS. On Monday, taking note of the opinion of the medical board, the court upheld the appointment.
The board has noted that the candidate is “in remission” and has been taking long-term medication to manage his condition. The court, however, noted that Bipolar Affective Disorder (BPAD) is a “lifelong illness”.
Granting relief to the candidate, the Supreme Court has also upheld the Delhi High Court decision which allowed the candidate to have notional seniority, but without any back wages.