High Court of Punjab and Haryana, Chandigarh
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Sanjeev Kumar v. State of Punjab & Ors - CWP-8011-2006  RD-P&H 3685 (4 July 2006)
IN THE HIGH COURT OF PUJAB AND HARYANA AT CHANDIGARH.
Case No. : C.W.P.No.8011 of 2006
Date of Decision : May 23, 2006.
Sanjeev Kumar ..... Petitioner
State of Punjab & others ..... Respondents Coram : Hon'ble Mr.Justice J.S.Khehar
Hon'ble Mr.Justice P.S.Patwalia
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Present : Mr.G.A.S.Mann, Advocate
for the petitioner.
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P.S.Patwalia, J. :
The petitioner was appointed as a Constable in the Punjab Police in the year 1989. He was served with a charge sheet on 23.7.1993, wherein he was alleged to have remained absent from duty for a period of 41 days 23 hours and 15 minutes. A departmental inquiry was held wherein the charge was established against the petitioner and as a result thereof, he was dismissed from service by order dated 24.4.1994.
Petitioner filed an appeal against the said order. The said C.W.P.No.8011 of 2006 2
appeal was also rejected by the Deputy Inspector General of Police, Ludhiana Range, Ludhiana, the appellate authority, by an order dated 22.08.1995. Against the aforementioned order, the petitioner preferred a revision which was also rejected by the Inspector General of Police by his order dated 26.4.1996.
Thereafter, the petitioner filed yet another revision petition to the Principal Secretary, Home, Government of Punjab which has been placed on record as Annexure P-7. The document Annexure P-7, attached with the writ petition, bears no date. Even in the list of events and the body of the petition, it has not been stated as to when it has been filed. The said revision petition appears to have been filed sometime in the year 2004 or
2005. It was also dismissed by the Government by an order dated 19.9.2005.
Petitioner has now filed the present writ petition challenging the order of dismissal dated 24.4.1994, communication rejecting the appeal dated 18.9.1995, the order rejecting the revision dated 26.4.1996 and the order dated 19.9.2005 by which the second revision petition filed by the petitioner was rejected.
We have heard Shri Gur Avtar Singh Mann, learned counsel for the petitioner and perused the record. We are of the view that the present writ petition has been filed after an inordinate delay and is consequently liable to be dismissed on the grounds of delay and latches alone. Rule 16.29 of the Punjab Police Rules provides for a right to appeal against an order of dismissal. After exhausting this remedy, a further remedy of revision is provided for under Rule 16.32. The petitioner, as already noticed above, was dismissed from service on 24.4.1994 and his appeal and revision was also rejected in September 1995 and vide order dated 26.4.1996. It is at that C.W.P.No.8011 of 2006 3
stage that cause of action had accrued to the petitioner to seek judicial redress. However, the present writ petition has been filed after almost 10 years thereafter. The present writ petition is, therefore, grossly belated and is liable to be dismissed on the ground of delay and latches alone. Further, filing of another revision and its entertainment in the year 2005 would, in our opinion, not furnish any fresh or further cause of action to the petitioner to approach this Court. Therefore, the argument of the learned counsel for the petitioner, since his further revision before the Court was rejected in October 2005, he can approach this Court now in April 2006, cannot be accepted. This is for the reason that firstly, under the Punjab Police Rules, there is only remedy of one revision under Rule 16.32 which has already been exhausted by the petitioner in the year 1996. Still further the petitioner has not disclosed when he filed the revision petition Annexure P-7.
Hence, mere filing of another revision petition would not condone delay.
At this stage, learned counsel for the petitioner referred to Rule 16.28 and contended that before rejecting the Review, no opportunity of hearing was granted to the petitioner. A reading of Rule 16.28 would show that power has been given to the Inspector General, Deputy Inspector General and Superintendent of Police to call for records of awards made by their subordinates and either confirm, enhance, modify or annul the same.
In case the officer proposed to enhance the penalty, it is in that situation that the defaulter concerned is to be given an opportunity to show cause either personally or in writing. In this case, firstly penalty was not enhanced and therefore there was no occasion for any opportunity being granted to the petitioner under this Rule. Secondly, Rule 16.28 confers a power on the aforementioned authorities to review the proceedings of a case. This power is concurrent with the power of revision given under Rule 16.32 where an C.W.P.No.8011 of 2006 4
authority superior to the appellate authority, on application of the delinquent official, would again exercise power of revision on account of material irregularity in proceedings, on production of fresh evidence. In the present case, the petitioner had exercised this remedy and his revision was dismissed in the year 1996 by the Inspector General of Police. Therefore in such a situation Rule 16.28 would have no application.
Notwithstanding what we have held herein above, even on merits, we do not find any case made out by the petitioner for interference by this Court in this writ petition. Learned counsel for the petitioner has raised a contention that he was not given a copy of the inquiry report before action was taken on the said report against him. It is still further stated that the order passed by the appellate authority in the year 1995 was not conveyed to him. Both these contentions however, are not borne out by the record. A reading of the Show Cause Notice (Annexure P-3) would show that copy of the inquiry report was served upon the petitioner. Likewise, a reading of the order conveying the rejection of the appeal (Annexure P-5) would show that copy of the order rejecting the appeal was supplied to the petitioner free of cost against proper receipt. Note 5 in the endorsement would show that this was done through a special messenger. Further during the course of arguments counsel for the petitioner has raised objections relating to the conduct of inquiry. However, on a query from the Court, the counsel stated that no such objections had been raised in the appeal or revision filed by him. Hence these arguments are now a mere afterthought and carry no weight. Even otherwise, a reading of the impugned orders would show that proper and due opportunity was given to the petitioner before dismissing him from service.
In view of what has been stated herein above, we find no C.W.P.No.8011 of 2006 5
ground to interfere in the impugned orders and hence, this writ petition is dismissed in limine.
( P.S.Patwalia )
May 23, 2006 ( J.S.Khehar )
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