O.A. (Appeal) No. 121 of 2014. Case: B. Shanmugan Vs Union of India and Ors.. Armed Forces Tribunal

Case NumberO.A. (Appeal) No. 121 of 2014
CounselFor Appellant: Ayyar & Iyer and For Respondentst: Haja Mohideen Gisthi, S.C.G.S.C.
JudgesV. Periya Karuppiah, J. (Member (J)) and K. Surendra Nath, Member (Ad.)
IssueArmy Act, 1950 - Sections 116, 117, 120, 162, 164, 38(1), 39, 54; Constitution of India - Articles 14, 20, 21, 310
Judgement DateApril 28, 2015
CourtArmed Forces Tribunal


V. Periya Karuppiah, J. (Member (J)), (Regional Bench, Chennai)

  1. The applicant has filed this application for the relief of calling for records from the 3rd respondent pursuant to an order dated 24.02.2014 which was transmitted to the applicant by the 4th respondent vide letter dated 11.03.2014; to quash both the impugned proceedings as contrary to law, bereft of merit and against the Articles 14, 20, 21 and 310 of the Indian Constitution; to order re-instatement of the applicant without backwages for the period kept out of duty and in the alternative to consider sheltered appointment after moderating the punishment of dismissal into discharge with all consequential and attendant benefits.

  2. The factual matrix of the applicant's case would be as follows:

    "The applicant enrolled as Sapper in the Madras Engineer Group on 08.08.1986. He was graded "exemplary" during the training and he was encouraged to qualify for Officers' Examination in 1990 to which he prepared after working hours. He submits that he was hypnotized by some strangers while going to duty and he did not know where he was kept, what happened to him and when he was released and how he reached Nilgiris. He was given to understand that some well-wishers had brought him to Coonoor from Coimbatore where he might have been in a wandering state. Thereafter, he was apprehended by the Police on 10.06.1997 and the rest can be had from the records of depositions compiled. He did not make any statement during the Court Martial, fearing that he would be bullied. He was charge-sheeted under Army Act Section 38(1) vide proceedings dated 01.08.1997 that he deserted the service on 10.11.1989. He was thereafter subjected to Summary Court Martial (SCM) and as per order dated 06.08.1997 issued by the 4th respondent, he was convicted for six months RI in the civil prison and was ordered to be dismissed from service. The applicant submits that he preferred a petition on 02.07.2012 under Section 164 of the Army Act, 1950 against imposition of conviction of RI for six months and the dismissal from service. The 3rd respondent vide letter dated 11.08.2012 took up the matter with HQ, Northern Command (DV), Pin-908542, C/o 56 APO who in turn wrote back to 3rd respondent vide letter dated 23.08.2012 informing that the applicant was tried by SCM on 06.08.1997 while 3 Engr Regt was in Ahmedabad under HQ Southern Command. The CO, 3 Engr Regt vide letter dated 06.08.1997 informed him to approach GOC-in-C, Southern Command (3rd respondent). Therefore, it is clearly revealed that the cause of action arose under 3rd respondent HQ. But no order has been passed so far. Therefore, the applicant had to file O.A. No. 34 of 2014 before this Tribunal. During the pendency of the said O.A., the 3rd respondent passed an order dated 24.02.2014 rejecting the petition without discussing the merit of the applicant's case. When the said O.A. came up for hearing before this Tribunal on 13.06.2014, it was dismissed as withdrawn with liberty to file fresh O.A. challenging the final order dated 24.02.2014. Hence the applicant filed the present Original Application. The applicant submits that the impugned order dated 24.02.2014 is a non-speaking and cryptic order and therefore, it is not sustainable in law. The...

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