Case BriefsHigh Courts

Rajasthan High Court: Alok Sharma, J. allowed a civil writ petition filed by a person against his transfer order. As a result of which, another order was passed regarding its transfer, quashing the previous transfer order.

 In the instant case, the petitioner was transferred to the post of RTO Alwar and respondent 3 herein who was posted as RTO earlier, was transferred to the Transport Department. Since the petitioner was due to retire in just six months, he challenged his transfer order before the Rajasthan Civil Services Appellate Tribunal, Jaipur. The Tribunal quashed his transfer order. Consequently, respondent 3 was transferred back to his original post of RTO and the petitioner was directed to join Parivahan Bhavan, Jaipur. Aggrieved by the said order of the Department, the instant petition was filed.

At the outset, the Court observed that the order passed by Tribunal was a well considered and replete with cogent reasons. It remarked that a transfer is an incident of service and the discretion of an employer in transferring an employee is quite wide. Ordinarily, no interference is to be made with an order of transfer unless it violates a statutory rule or is malafide. But it was opined that the same is not an iron-clad opinion in law. The Court relied on the case of Manjula Pathak v. State of Rajasthan, (SB CWP No. 14577 of 2016), which was also considered by the Tribunal, and held that transfer of an employee, within a year of his imminent superannuation, deserved interference.

It was observed that an employee, who is to retire within one year, should not be transferred if there is no obvious cause, as such a transfer would cause avoidable disruption at the end of a government servant’s career and create difficulties in a post-retiral settlement.

The Court was of the view that it was for the State Government to satisfy the Tribunal as to the circumstances which made it manifest that transferring the petitioner was founded upon a careful evaluation of public interest and/or administrative exigencies and that the impugned transfer was not a casual and mechanical exercise of discretion. The State should also have satisfied the Tribunal that while passing the impugned transfer order, the fact of the respondent 3 superannuating in six months was consciously taken into consideration. Neither of the above was admittedly done.

In view of the above, it was held that the order passed by the Tribunal required no interference by this Court under Article 226 of the Constitution of India. No manifest injustice can be said to have been caused to the petitioner by the impugned order of transfer. The consequential order passed by respondents had thus to be sustained.

The writ petition was dismissed for being bereft of merits.[Rani Jain v. Government of Rajasthan, 2019 SCC OnLine Raj 1615, decided on 13-05-2019]

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Patna High Court: The Bench of Madhuresh Prasad, J. dismissed a civil writ petition, challenging cancellation of a lady’s appointment as Angan Bari Sevika, holding that the petition was devoid of merits.

The instant petition was filed praying for quashing the order issued by the District Programme Officer (DPO) whereby and whereunder petitioner’s selection as Angan Bari Sevika had been cancelled. The Court, at the very outset, noted that the petition had been filed without challenging the DPO’s order.

Contention of the respondent-State, as well as the private respondent, was that the Aam Sabha, wherein the petitioner was selected, was conducted in absence of the Child Development Project Officer. Further, the number of beneficiaries in the service area was not ascertained prior to petitioner’ selection.

Learned counsel for the petitioner, Mr. Sanjay Kumar, submitted that the population of Scheduled Caste for the Center in question was 300, the population of Extremely Backward Class was 150, the population of Backward Class was 250 and population of General Class was 400. Petitioner, being a member of the General Class, was of the predominant class in the area and, therefore, her selection was rightly done by the Aam Sabha. Further, the determination as to the number of beneficiaries was not relevant in terms of the Circular dated 25-09-2001 issued by the Social Welfare Department, Government of Bihar.

The Court noted that the concerned Circular clearly contemplated that selection for Angan Bari Sevika must be done from the predominant class based on the population of beneficiaries. In view of such situation, selection of a candidate on the basis of predominance of caste or class without ascertaining the number of beneficiaries, i.e., actual population below poverty line within the various castes/class, could not be sustained and would defeat the very purpose of social welfare sought to be achieved by the Integrated Child Development Scheme through establishment of Angan Bari Centre. Thus, it was held that the selection of petitioner had rightly been cancelled.[Nirmala Kumari v. State of Bihar, 2019 SCC OnLine Pat 566, Order dated 22-04-2019]

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Patna High Court: The Bench of Madhuresh Prasad, J. allowed a civil writ petition filed by a constable who was dismissed from his service without pointing out infirmity in his appointment and also without affording him a hearing in the matter.

Petitioner herein was dismissed from his service as a constable in the Bihar Police, pursuant to scrutiny by the Director General of Police and Inspector General of various appointments made earlier. It was found that the appointment of the petitioner along with others was illegally made in an irregular manner. The instant petition was filed assailing the said order of dismissal.

Respondent’s objection was that the petition, having been filed ten years after petitioner’s dismissal, was barred by delay and laches. Counsel for the petitioner Mr Radha Mohan Pandey submitted that the order of dismissal was without any show cause or opportunity and without holding a regular enquiry or departmental proceeding against the petitioner, even though he had worked in the police force as a confirmed employee on the post of constable for about 12 years.

The Court opined that petitioner’s dismissal was done at the dictate of a higher authority on the basis of a perception that in the period when he was appointed under the special circumstances, all constables were appointed irregularly. This order did not show as to what was the infirmity in his appointment. Also, the said order was passed without affording any opportunity of hearing to him. As such, the dismissal order was unsustainable in law.

With regards to the objection of delay, the Court noted that petitioner had filed an appeal against dismissal order in the year 2014, and pursuant to dismissal thereof the present petition was filed in the year 2016.

In view of the above, the order dismissing petitioner from service was quashed and he was directed to be reinstated.[Shambhu Nath Tiwary v. State of Bihar,  2019 SCC OnLine Pat 394, Order dated 13-03-2019]