Intelligible Differentia

Intelligible Differentia

Intelligible Differentia

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W.P.(C) 12184/2021: 26-NOV-2021

Bench:  Manmohan J and Navin Chawla J

Issue- Whether having participated in the advertisement without demur the petitioner can challenge the said disqualification at this stage?


The petitioner applied for the post of Constable (Driver) under OBC category and successfully qualified PET/PST, written test and documentation and practical (skill) test.

Subsequently the petitioner was called on 14th September 2021 at the Referral Hospital, ITBP, Surajpur, Greater Noida for a detailed medical examination wherein he was declared unfit on the ground of a tattoo embossed on his right arm.

The petitioner contends that the tattoo mark on the petitioner’s right arm is his own name and it does not cause any prejudice to anyone and the same is within the permissible limits as provided under the rules. He also states that none of the government guidelines prohibit tattoo as a medical disqualification. He also states that the conditions/requirements laid down by the respondents are also not in accordance with the norms followed by the Indian Army.

The Court held that the petitioner admittedly has a tattoo on his right arm, which is the saluting arm. Consequently, the petitioner is not eligible as per Clause 4.4(iv)(b) of the Advertisement.

The Court further said that the petitioner’s reliance on the Indian Army policy is misconceived as the petitioner is seeking recruitment in ITBP and the advertisement on the basis of which he had applied contained the disqualification in Clause 4.4(iv). Having participated in the advertisement without demur the petitioner cannot challenge the said disqualification at this stage.

In any event, the stipulation of disqualification of tattoo on the right arm is a classification that is based on an intelligible differentia and the intelligible differentia has a rationale relation to the object sought to be achieved, namely, that the tattoo is visible while saluting. Consequently, the petitioner’s candidature has been rightly rejected.