The High Court (HC) on Tuesday issued a rule asking authorities concerned to explain why it should not declare the appointment of 5,054 senior staff nurses illegal.
The government made the appointment at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic on the basis of a recommendation by the Bangladesh Public Service Commission (BPSC).
The court asked officials including the health secretary, director general of health directorate and BPSC chairman to give an explanation within the next four weeks.
A HC division bench of Justice Obaidul Hassan and Justice AKM Zahirul Huq passed the order after holding a hearing on a writ filed in this regard.
The HC rule also sought an explanation on why 51 writ petitioners, who failed to secure appointment as senior staff nurses in spite of passing the written and viva exams, shall not be ordered to get appointed.
Barrister Anik R Haque and Barrister Bibhuti Tarafder moved the plea before court, while Deputy Attorney General Jesmin Sultana Shamsad represented the state.
The petition said an advertisement was published on August 10, 2017 for the appointment of 4,000 senior staff nurses. Subsequently, more than 16,000 job aspirants sat for the written examination. The BPSC published the written test result on February 13, 2018.
In the written exam, 11,357 candidates qualified. After verifying academic documents, the BPSC on June 11, 2018 published a notice cancelling the written test result of 1,017 candidates. Later on August 19 that year, 5,100 candidates were recommended for appointment according to the merit list.
The government made the appointment according to the recommendation.
In March last when the country reported maiden coronavirus cases, the government again moved for nurse appointment. It sent a letter of demand to the BPSC for the appointment of 6,000 nurses. The BPSC on April 30 recommended appointment of 5,054 candidates who qualified for the job circular of 2017, and the government approved the appointment.
On June 11, 2018, five of the appointed nurses got their appointments cancelled by the BPSC due to incompetence. In such a situation, 51 candidates who failed to secure appointment in spite of passing written and viva exams filed the writ petition.