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news details
Take appropriate action in suspension cases: HC to CS
Employee suspended in 1977, case goes on
5/23/2019 10:36:45 PM
Early Times Report
Jammu, May 23: The J&K High Court has directed the state Chief Secretary to collect data from all departments and autonomous bodies about the employees who have been placed under suspension, and if there is inordinate delay in taking action against them, take appropriate action without any delay.
This direction was passed by First Puisne Judge, Justice Rajesh Bindal while dismissing a petition filed by Bal Krishan Bhat who seeks quashment of suspension order issued in May 1977.
The court observed that in Bhat's case, no authority ever thought of reviewing that suspension order or ensuring any action against him, as if there is no record available of the employees working in different establishments.
"The Chief Secretary is directed to collect data from all the different departments and autonomous bodies about the employees who have been placed under suspension, the period thereof and if there is inordinate delay in taking action against them, the reasons therefore and appropriate action be taken in the matter in all those pending cases without any delay. Needful be done within four months from the date of receipt of copy of the order," the court directed.
"This case was fit for ordering action against the officers for their inaction, however, the matter being about four decades old and there being number of officers who may be responsible, this court is not passing any order in that regard but this may be treated as a warning that action may be taken in future if such a matter comes before the court."
The court further observed that the conduct of the investigating and the prosecuting agency also needs to be commented upon. Investigation in the FIR, which was registered way back in 1977, was not completed for a period of nine years. The first challan , was presented in 1986, which was not complete. Despite directions by the court for presentation of separate challans, needful was not done. Ultimately the court had to consign the challan to record with liberty to get the same revived in case fresh challans were filed. Thereafter the prosecuting agency kept quiet as no further efforts were made, as if there were no responsible officers to take any case registered to its logical end, which could be a message to other employees who may be indulging in misappropriation of state money.
The the petitioner had joined service in the year 1970 and was discharging his duties honestly. While he was working as Nazir at Sonawari, Baramulla in May 1977, he was falsely involved in a criminal case, on the basis of which FIR No.37 of 1977 was registered against him at Police Station Sumbal on 24.04.1977, under Sections 409/467 RPC. It was alleged that the petitioner had embezzled an amount of Rs 15,608/-. The petitioner was pressurized to deposit the amount which he refused being not involved in embezzlement. However, the money was deposited by A.G Mir the then Tehsildar (now deceased) in the name of the petitioner, getting his signature forcibly. Immediately the petitioner was suspended. Initially he was paid 50% as subsistence allowance which was enhanced to 75% but after migration it was reduced to 50%.
Neither the petitioner was prosecuted nor any departmental proceedings were initiated against him. However, still he remained under suspension from February 1977 till the date of his retirement in May 2002.
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