The Constitution Bench in Jammu & Kashmir v. Triloki Nath Khosa, (1974) 1 SCC 19 considered the question, whether persons drawn from different sources and integrated into one class can be classified on the basis of their Educational Qualifications for promotion. The Constitution Bench answered the question in the affirmative holding, providing for Graduates to be eligible for promotion to the exclusion of Diploma Holders is not violative of Articles 14 and 16.
The legal position was summarized in T.R. Kothandaraman v. Tamil Nadu Water Supply and Drainage Board, (1994) 6 SCC 282. Higher Educational Qualification can be the basis not only for barring promotion, but also for restricting the scope of promotion. However, restriction placed cannot go to the extent of seriously jeopardizing the chances of promotion.
Court shall have to be conscious about the need for maintaining efficiency in service, while judging the validity of the classification.
– Hon’ble Justice V. Ramasubramanian, Ashok Kumar v. State of Jammu and Kashmir, [Civil Appeal Nos. 5189-5192 of 2017].