Jagat Narayan, C.J.
1. This is a special appeal against the judgment of learned single judge allowing a writ petition filed by shyamsingh respondent against the State of Rajasthan and the Rajasthan Public Service Commission. We have heard the learned counsel for the parties and are of the opinion that the appeal must be allowed.
2. Shyam Singh petitioner had appeared at a competitive examination conducted by the Rajasthan Public Service Commission to select candidates for the Rajasthan Police and Accounts Services. The written examination took place in December, 1962. The petitioner was declared as qualified at the written teat and was called for interview by the Public Service Commission. The interview were to start from 22nd April, 1963. Meanwhile the petitioner was also selected for the Emergency Commission and he joined the pre-Commission Training in the Army on 11. 4. 63. He could not, therefore, appear at the interview before the Public Service Commission After the emergency was over, the petitioner was released from Defence Services on 1. 11. 1967.
In order to absorb the released short Services Emergency Commissioned personnel, the Governor of Rajasthan framed the Rajasthan Civil Services (Recruitment of Released Emergency Commissioned and Short Services Commissioned Officers) Rules, 1968.
4. In these Rules vacancies were reserved for the Released Commissioned Officers in various state services including the Rajasthan Police Service and the Rajasthan Accounts Service. These posts were to be filled on the basis of the record of the military service of these released officers and their performance at a written test in English, Hindi and General knowledge together with a viva voce test. A concession was granted to these officers with regard to the age. It is contained in Rule 5 of the Rajasthan Civil Services (Recruitment of Released Emergency Commissioned and Short Services Commissioned Officers) Rules, 1988, the relevant part of which runs as follows:
Provided further that no Released Commissioned Officer shall be eligible for selection against any reserved vacancy unless he... on the date of his joining the pre-Commission training, eligible to appear at the combined competitive Examination... was within the age limits as prescribed by the rules of the particuler service for which he applies against the reserved vacancies...
5. A combined Competitive Examination was held in 1968 for recruitment to the Rajasthan Police Service and the Rajasthan Accounts Service. Nineteen vacancies were to be filled in the Rajasthan Police Service Out of them, 6 were reserved for Released Commissioned Officers. 12 Vacancies were to be filled in the Rajasthan Accounts Service, out of which 3 were reserved for Released Commissioned Officers. The Released Commissioned Officers were to appear in the same Hindi and English papers in which the other candidates at the ordinary competitive examination for these services had to appear, but the latter candidates had to take several other papers in addition.
6. The petitioner applied for admission to the Examination for reserved vacancies in both these services. At first he was held ineligible to appear in the examination for the reserved vacancies on the ground of age but on his representation, a provisional admission card was issued to him which was subsequently cancelled before the commencement of the Examination. He then filed the present writ petition,
7. The date of birth of Shyamsingh is 23. 7. 1938. The relevant service rule about the age limit prescribed for the two services is as follows:
Rule 11. Age: (1) A candidate for direct recruitment must have x attained the age of 20 years and must not have attained the age of 25 years ...on the first day of January next following the date of commencement of the examination. (Itaks ours)
8. As we have already mentioned above, the combined competitive Examination for recruitment to the above two services was held in 1962. It commenced in 1962 and continued till April, 1963. The learned single Judge was of the opinion that because the 1962 Examination was continuing when the petitioner joined the pre-commission training on 11. 4. 03 he should be deemed to be eligible to appear in combined Competitive Examination at the time of joining this training within the meaning of rule 5 of the Recruitment of Released Emergency Commissioned Officers Rules. We are of the opinion that it is not possible to interpret rule 5 in this manner. The meaning of this rule to our mind is that if an examination were to commence on the date on which the officer joined the pre-Commission training, he should have been eligible to appear in it. The words used in rule 5 are '...was within the age limits as prescribed by the rules of the particular service for which he applies against the reserved vacancies.' The Service Rules of the two particular services prescribe that the candidate must not have attained the age of 26 years on the first day of January next following the date of commencement of the Examination If an examination were to be held in 1963, then only such candidates as had not attained the age of 25 years on 1.1.1964. would have been eligible to appear in it and the petitioner who completed 25 years of age on 23. 7. 53 would have been eligible to appear in it.
9. In the result, we hold that Shyamsingh petitioner was not eligible to appear in the Combined Competitive Examination held in 1968 against the reserved vacancies under the Rajasthan Civil Services (Recruitment of Released Emergency Commissioned and Short Services Commissioned Officers) Rules, 1968. We, therefore, allow the appeal and set aside the order of the learned single Judge. In the circumstances of the case, we leave the parties to bear their own costs throughout.
10. Before parting with the case, we would like to observe that the writ petition could not have been allowed without impleading the other Released Officers who had appeared at the Examination, as parties.