Case BriefsHigh Courts

Kerala High Court: A Single Judge Bench comprising of B. Kemal Pasha, J. drew a nexus between the act and the discharge of the official duty of the inspector.

Petitioner who was Sub Inspector of Police was accused under Sections 342, 323, 324, 294(b) and 506(ii) IPC under a private complaint.

The complainant has contended that he was unnecessarily taken into custody by the Police while he along with his friend was in the car which allegedly was being driven in a drunken state. Further, while in custody the complainant attacked another sub-inspector on duty when taken into custody. The petitioner police officer through his counsel Chandrasekharan Nair stated that the complainant pleaded guilty by voluntarily appearing before the Court wherein it clearly states his faulty complaint and thus the version of the petitioner cannot be rebutted.

The Court was of the view that it was evident that it was in discharge of his official duty that the petitioner took the complainant into custody and the offence committed was proved by his acts. Therefore the complaint as such cannot be proceeded with for want of sanction following which the petition stood allowed. [Sajikumar v. V. Sasikumar, 2018 SCC OnLine Ker 6014, decided on 05-02-2018]

Case BriefsSupreme Court

Supreme Court: A Bench comprising of Uday U. Lalit and Dr D.Y. Chandrachud, JJ. allowed an appeal filed against the judgment of the Madhya Pradesh High Court whereby the State was directed to appoint the respondent on the post concerned in case his name found a place in the merit list.

In 2012, the Professional Examination Board, Madhya Pradesh invited applications for filling posts of subedars, platoon commanders and inspectors of police. The respondent participated in the selection process and tendered an affidavit as per the requirements wherein he disclosed that a case under Sections 323, 325, 506 and 34 IPC was registered against him which was pending on the date of such disclosure but he was never arrested. However, within 4 days thereafter, a compromise was entered into between the parties. Still, further, the respondent was taken into judicial custody on forfeiture of bond for non-compliance. The respondent was selected in the written examination; however, after considering his character verification report, his candidature was rejected. The respondent filed a writ petition there against which was allowed by a Single Judge and further affirmed by the Division Bench of the High Court. Aggrieved thereby, the State preferred the instant appeal.

While deciding the matter, the Court referred to, inter alia, Avtar Singh v. Union of India, (2016) 8 SCC 471. In the present case, it was held that even after the disclosure is made by a candidate, the employer would be well within his rights to consider the antecedents and the suitability of the candidate. While so considering, the employer can certainly take into account the job profile for which the selection is undertaken, the severity of the charges levelled against the candidate and whether the acquittal in question was an honourable acquittal or was merely on the ground of benefit of doubt. Following the Avtar Singh case, the Court held that the employer, in instant circumstances, could not be compelled to appoint the respondent. Therefore, the appeal was allowed and the judgment impugned was set aside. [State of M.P. v. Abhijit Singh Pawar,2018 SCC OnLine SC 2555, decided on 26-11-2018]

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Delhi High Court: A Division Bench comprising of Hima Kohli and Rekha Palli, JJ., dismissed a writ petition filed seeking directions to the respondent to promote the petitioner to the post of Sub Inspector and Inspector along with consequential benefits from the dates on which his junior, Respondent 2, was promoted to the said ranks.

The undisputed facts of the case were that the petitioner was appointed as a Constable in respondent Force. He was promoted on a couple of occasions by successfully completing the departmental tests. However, at the relevant time, the petitioner was not eligible for appearing in the examination held for promotion to the rank of Sub Inspector. The respondent, along with other personnel junior to the petitioner, having completed 18 years of service, were eligible to appear in the said examination. The said juniors, on successful completion of the examination, got promoted and became seniors of the petitioner. This incident dates back to the year 2007. The petition, seeking to disturb the seniority list, was filed after a lapse of about 10 years.

The High Court relied on Union of India v. Chaman Rana, 2018 SCC OnLine SC 294, to hold that in present circumstances,  the petitioner was not entitled to any relief. The cause of action arose in the year 2007 or latest in 2010. The petitioner chose to sit quiet for about 10 years. In the case mentioned, Supreme Court said that in matters regarding promotion in service, there is always an urgency. The aggrieved person must approach the Court at the earliest opportunity or within a reasonable time thereafter, as, in the meantime, a third party right accrues to those who are subsequently promoted. The High Court held that the petition was liable to be dismissed as the seniority list could not be unsettled at such a belated stage. [Shamsher Singh v. ITBP Force, 2018 SCC OnLine Del 9639, dated 03-07-2018]