High Court of Punjab and Haryana, Chandigarh
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Rukwinder Singh v. Financial Commissioner & Ors. - CWP-4503-2004  RD-P&H 774 (15 February 2006)
Civil Writ Petition No.4503 of 2004.
Date of decision : 21.2.2006.
Rukwinder Singh vs. Financial Commissioner and another.
Coram: Hon'ble Mr. Justice J.S.Narang.
Hon'ble Ms. Justice Kiran Anand Lall.
Present: Mr.Pawan Sharma,Advocate,for the petitioner.
Mr.C.M.Munjal,Senior Additional Advocate General,Punjab, for respondent no.1.
Mr.D.S.Bali,Senior Advocate with
Mr.D.V.Gupta,Advocate,for respondent no.3.
Kiran Anand Lall,J.
The Collector, Ludhiana, appointed respondent no.2, Gurdev Singh, as lambardar of Village Doraha, Tehsil Payal, District Ludhiana, on 14.8.2001 vide Annexure P1. There were, in all, three candidates, for the post, the other two being Rukwinder Singh petitioner and one Kartar Singh. The latter did not pursue his application and was proceeded ex-parte, whereas the petitioner was ignored due to being less meritorious and having less academic qualifications than respondent no.2. The petitioner challenged the appointment of respondent no.2, in appeal which was accepted and the order Annexure P1 was set aside vide order dated 15.5.2002, Annexure P2, substituting the petitioner as Lambardar in place of respondent no.2. Later on, the Financial Commissioner allowed the revision filed against Annexure P2, vide order dated 11.12.2003, Annexure P3, and thereby set aside the order of the Commissioner and restored that of the Collector.
Civil Writ Petition No.4503 of 2004. (2) It is the order of the Financial Commissioner Annexure P3 which is under challenge in this petition filed by the Rukwinder Singh petitioner.
After hearing both sides, we do not find any perversity, short-coming or infirmity in the impugned order, nor any such could be pointed by the learned counsel for the petitioner.
The Collector had appointed respondent no.2 as lambardar, on the recommendation of the Tehsildar, Payal, as against the recommendation made by the Sub-Divisional Magistrate, Payal, in respect of the petitioner. It is not in dispute that the academic qualifications of respondent no.2 were much higher than those of the petitioner. The former had studied upto B.A.Part-II whereas the latter was only matriculate, at the relevant time. In addition, respondent no.2 was a social worker and had also been participating in NSS and NCC.
Learned counsel for respondent no.2 rightly pointed out that while setting aside the well reasoned order of the Collector, the Commissioner did not assess the relative merits and de-merits of the petitioner and respondent no.2, nor did he give any cogent reason for differing with the opinion of the Collector. It is settled position of law that Commissioner cannot substitute his choice in place of that of the Collector, without giving solid reasons for doing so. The choice of the District Collector in the matter is of primary importance and it cannot be interfered with unless there is some patent shortcoming in it or it suffers from some other infirmity or perversity.
Respondent no.2 who had higher academic qualifications and was a social worker also, definitely had an edge over the petitioner. Therefore, the Collector found him to be more suitable as compared to the petitioner. The Commissioner had no valid reasons to set aside the appointment of respondent Civil Writ Petition No.4503 of 2004. (3) no.2. These facts rightly weighed with the Financial Commissioner in upsetting his order and restoring that of the Collector.
We find no reason to interfere with the impugned order dated 11.12.2003 passed by respondent no.1. The petition shall, therefore, stand dismissed.
(Kiran Anand Lall)
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