HP HC | Lamentable state of affairs; Education Department is one of the biggest litigants before this Court and majority of writ petitions relate to transfer and adjustment of the teachers

Himachal Pradesh High Court: A Division Bench of Tarlok Singh Chauhan and Bhusan Barowalia JJ. dismissed the petition refusing to interfere with the transfer order also stating that the government is equally responsible for violating notifications specifically imposing a ban on transfers.

The facts of the case are such that the petitioner after rendering service for a considerable time came to be promoted as Headmaster and was posted at Government High School Naila, Tehsil Churah, District Chamba. Thereafter, the petitioner on 29.09.2020 was appointed as Principal and posted at Government Senior Secondary School, Dugli, Tehsil Churah, District Chamba, where he is serving till date and has filed the instant petition for grant of direction by respondent 1 for transfer from hard area to the soft area/station of the petitioner as he has completed the normal tenure in the hard area and crossed the age of 55 years and family compelling circumstances.

Counsel for the petitioner submitted that the wife of the petitioner is suffering from a hearing problem and is under treatment from Rajiv Gandhi Post Graduate Ayurvedic College and Hospital Paprola, District Kangra, H.P. and the wife of the petitioner is also suffering from Gall Bladder stone and required proper medication and surgery and there is none in the house to look after her as their son is employed in private sector in Noida (U.P.) and two daughters are pursuing their own studies.

The Court relied on judgment Avinash Nagra v. Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti, (1997) 2 SCC 534 and observed  “The teacher who has been kept in charge, bears more added higher responsibility and should be more exemplary. His/her character and conduct should be more like Rishi and as loco parentis and such is the duty, responsibility and charge expected of a teacher.”

The Court further observed that the petitioner, as mentioned above, is a teacher appointed for educating students and the standards expected of a person practicing the noble teaching profession must be ideal so that the students may know and practice the best principles of civilized life. It would be a very lamentable state of affairs that when teachers who are considered as equal to God, would fall from the highest pedestal to the lowest level by caring and looking after their self-interests alone and not the interest of their pupil(s).

The Court held that the Headmasters, who are later on promoted as Principals, are in all likelihood bound to be above 55 years of age, and on being promoted as such, are liable to be transferred/served anywhere in the State. Therefore, no exception can be taken against the transfer on the ground that the petitioner has crossed the age of 55 years.

In view of the above, petition was dismissed.[Milap Chand v. State of HP, 2021 SCC OnLine HP 560, decided on 22-03-2021]

Arunima Bose, Editorial Assistant has reported this brief.

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