The DTC informed the Court that over 100 individuals with color blindness had been appointed to the department, which resulted in the establishment of an independent medical board in 2013.
The Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) was recently ordered by the Delhi High Court to provide an explanation for the 2008 hiring of a driver who was colorblind, despite the potential grave consequences for public safety.
The fact that the DTC did not pursue legal action against the driver and one hundred other individuals who were appointed based on the report from Guru Nanak Eye Centre and shared the same medical condition was deemed regrettable by Justice Chandra Dhari Singh.
“It is very disheartening for this Court to witness such negligence on the part of the petitioner department in appointing its driver,” the Court said.
The observations were made by the Court during the hearing of a petition brought by the DTC challenging an order issued by the Central Administrative Tribunal regarding the dismissal of the respondent driver following an accident in 2011.
Following its inquiry into how a person with color blindness could have been hired as a driver, the DTC informed the Court that the driver had produced a fit certification from the Guru Nanak Hospital.
Additionally, it was disclosed that over a hundred individuals with color blindness were appointed, which led to the establishment of an independent medical board in April 2013.
Following the hearing of the arguments, the Court concluded that DTC had committed “wrongful action” by depending on the driver’s medical certificate when the certificate from its own medical department conflicted with the Guru Nanak Eye Center report.
The driver’s appointment as a driver with the DTC and his three-year permit to operate the buses between 2008 and 2011 are both horrifying circumstances, the Court noted.
“This Court notes that it is a regrettable situation that the petitioner only emerged from its protracted sleep in 2013 and established an independent medical board on April 13, 2013, to assess the respondent’s medical suitability,” the statement continued.
The Court described the situation as extremely serious since it pertains to public safety and stated that the DTC was not being careful enough in making sure that its drivers are qualified for the job in every way.
As a result, the Court requested information regarding the reasons behind and conditions surrounding the driver’s appointment.
“Accordingly, it is directed that the Chairperson, Delhi Transport Corporation shall file a personal affidavit, after due investigation, stating therein the details of the officer who is responsible for appointing the person suffering from colour blindness/medically unfit for the position of driver with the petitioner department.”
The DTC was also questioned by the Court to clarify why respondent’s medical records were not presented to the Tribunal during the hearing.
On March 22, the Court scheduled the case for consideration in an effort to ensure that the order was followed.