Rajasthan High Court: The Division Bench of Indrajit Mahanty, CJ and Mohammad Rafiq, J., dismissed a petition challenging an order passed by the Central Administrative Tribunal, Jaipur Bench, Jaipur.

 In the present case, the respondent was sanctioned one year of study leave from 01-10-2010 to 30-09-2011 for pursuing a two-year course in MBA on a regular basis. The duration of the course was two years and the respondent had applied for an extension of leave for another year. The leave was not extended by the applicant hence the respondent had to join the duties on 03-10-2011. The applicant-department thereafter had asked the respondent to submit the necessary documents for consideration of the leave extension which was thereafter rejected.

The Court upon perusal of the records reiterated the decision of the Tribunal wherein it was stated “In the present case, the applicant has furnished a certificate of satisfactory performance for one year of study which the respondents allowed him against the two year course. As such therefore, it would be manifestly unjust for any claim to be made to the effect that it was the applicant’s fault that the did not complete the course when it is clear from the record and the admission of the respondents themselves that he was not granted the necessary extension of leave in order to do so. As the applicant did not overstay the period of leave granted in substantive terms and continues to serve with the respondents after rejoining duties, there appears to be no justification for visiting him with the recovery demand in question.”

High Court thereafter referred to the Rule 14 of the Study Leave Rules in the Indian Railway Establishment Code Volume-I, which provides for recovery in a situation where the applicant does not complete the course due to his/her own fault whereas in the present case, the respondent was unable to pursue the course because of the applicant-department declining the extension.

The Bench upheld the order passed by the respondent and dismissed the present application. [Union of India v. G.S. Rathore, 2019 SCC OnLine Raj 3943, decided on 22-10-2019]

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