[Audi alteram partem] Utt HC | Order passed without giving an opportunity to be heard gross violation of natural justice; Court quashes order passed by Registrar

Uttaranchal High Court: Manoj Kumar Tiwari, J., allowed petitions which were filed having the common question of law and facts thus were taken together with the consent of parties.

The petitioner was elected as Director/Member of Committee of Management of a Cooperative Society, namely, Buhuddesiya Narsan Gurukul Kisan Sewa Sahkari Samiti Ltd., Haridwar, on 23-07-2018 thereafter; he was elected as Chairman of the Committee of Management of the said Cooperative Society for a period of five years. On 08-08-2020, the Committee of Management passed a resolution for removal of the petitioner and two other persons (petitioners from the other petition) from the membership of Committee of Management of the Cooperative Society on the ground that they had absented from three consecutive meetings of the Committee of Management.

Petitioners then had approached the District Assistant Registrar, Cooperative Societies, who had appointed an inquiry officer and based on the inquiry report District Assistant Registrar issued a notice to the Managing Director of the Cooperative Society concerned on 17-03-2021 calling upon him to show cause as to why disciplinary proceedings may not be initiated against him for fraudulently removing the petitioners from the membership of the Cooperative Society. It was further provided in the notice that petitioners shall be permitted to participate in the next meeting of the Committee of Management/Board of Directors. Later on, by the order dated 31-03-2021, passed by the Registrar in which he had set-aside the notice/order dated 17-03-2021 passed by District Assistant Registrar.

Counsel for the petitioner, Mr Jitendra Chaudhary & Mr B. N. Molakhi submitted that the order passed by the Registrar was passed without issuing any notice to the petitioners or without affording any opportunity of hearing to them.

The Court observed that Since the District Assistant Registrar in his order had provided that petitioners shall be entitled to participate in the next meeting of the Board of Directors/Committee of Management, therefore, it was incumbent upon the Registrar to provide opportunity of hearing to the petitioners before setting-aside the order/notice issued by the District Assistant Registrar.

The Court allowed the petition and held that since Registrar has passed the impugned order without hearing the petitioners, therefore, the impugned order, which has been passed in violation of principles of natural justice, cannot sustained.

[Krishna Pal Singh v. State of Uttarakhand, 2021 SCC OnLine Utt 491, decided on 21-05-2021]


Suchita Shukla, Editorial Assistant has put this report together 

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