ITBP candidate declared unfit for having tattoo on wrong arm, Delhi HC upholds order

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    The Delhi High Court recently dismissed a petition from an Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) candidate who successfully qualified physical efficiency test/physical standards test, written test and documentation, and practical (skill) test for the post of constable (driver) under the OBC category, but was subsequently declared unfit on the ground of a tattoo on his right arm.
The division bench of Justices Manmohan and Navin Chawla noted: “The stipulation of disqualification of a tattoo on the right arm is a classification that is based on an intelligible differentia and the intelligible differentia has a rational relation to the object sought to be achieved, namely, that the tattoo is visible while saluting.”
    However, the candidate contended that the tattoo mark was his own name and it did not cause any prejudice to anyone. “None of the government guidelines prohibit tattoo as a medical disqualification. The
conditions/requirements laid down by the respondents are also not in accordance with the norms followed by the Indian Army,” the candidate argued.  
    The Court, however, said that he was not eligible as per the minimum medical standard mentioned in the advertisement issued by ITBP for the post. It also said that the candidate’s “reliance on the Indian Army policy is misconceived” as he was seeking recruitment in ITBP.