WP (C) 15 of 2011. Case: Narendra Debbarma Vs The State of Tripura and Ors.. Tripura High Court

Case NumberWP (C) 15 of 2011
Party NameNarendra Debbarma Vs The State of Tripura and Ors.
CounselFor Appellant: A.K. Bhowmik, Sr. Advocate and R. Datta, Advocate and For Respondents: S. Deb, Sr. Advocate and S. Chakraborty, Addl. G.A.
JudgesS.C. Das, J.
IssueConstitution of India - Article 226
Judgement DateJanuary 10, 2017
CourtTripura High Court

Judgment:

S.C. Das, J., (At Agartala)

  1. The petitioner while was working as a Forester in the Tirthamukh Range of Gomati Forest Division, Jatanbari, was placed under suspension by an order dated 25.08.2007, contemplating a disciplinary proceeding against him and the suspension order was revoked by an order dated 07.01.2008 w.e.f. 31.08.2007. He retired from service on 31.08.2007 on his attaining the age of superannuation. The Forest Department of the Government of Tripura, vide Memo No. F. 19(686)/VIG/For-07/9551-54, dated 25.07.2009 (Annexure-6 to the writ petition), signed by the Joint Secretary, Government of Tripura, by order of the Governor, a disciplinary proceeding was drawn up against the petitioner on the following Article of Charges:-

    STATEMENT OF ARTICLES OF CHARGE FRAMED AGAINST SHRI NARENDRA DEB BARMA, FORESTER (NOW RETD.) OF FOREST DEPARTMENT, GOVERNMENT OF TRIPURA

    Article-I

    That the said Sri Narendra Debbarma, Forester (now Retd.) while functioning as Beat Officer, Dyke-IV under Tirthamukh Range under Gumti Forest Division, Jatanbari willfully neglected his duty by not doing the Government works properly as assigned to him in accordance with the norms/orders of Forest department and general financial rule thus, acted in manner most unbecoming of a Government Servant and to the severe detriment to Government interest by misappropriation and defalcation of Government money to the tune of Rs. 3,72,375/-.

    Thus, Sri Narendra Debbarma, Forester (now Retd.) is charged for lack of integrity and serious misconduct.

    Article-II

    That the said Sri Narendra Debbarma, Forester (now Retd.) while functioning as Beat Officer, Dyke-IV under Tirthamukh Range under Gumti Forest Division, Jatanbari, willfully neglected his duties, and did not carry out plantation and forestry related works as entrusted to him as per specifications and norms. Sri Narendra Debbarma, Fr. (now Retd.) acted in a manner most unbecoming of a Government servant and to the severe detriment to Government interest.

    Thus, Sri Narendra Debbarma, Forester (now Retd.), is charged for lack of devotion to Government duties and for serious negligence.

    Sd/-
    Principal Chief Conservator of Forest,
    Tripura, Agartala.

  2. It is evident from the Memo dated 25.07.2009 that the proceeding was initiated after having sanction of the Governor under Rule 9 of CCS (Pension) Rules, as amended, and, it was directed that the Chief Conservator of Forest shall initiate/conduct the inquiry against the petitioner on those charges.

  3. The Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (respondent No. 3) appointed/entrusted respondent No. 6, the Conservator of Forest, to inquire into the charges and accordingly, the respondent No. 6 conducted inquiry and submitted report to the Government of Tripura vide report dated 30.04.2010 (Annexure-14 to the writ petition).

  4. In the disciplinary proceeding, the disciplinary authority as well as the charged officer i.e. the petitioner adduced evidence both oral and documentary and the Inquiring Authority considering the evidence and materials submitted the report holding that the charges framed against the petitioner were proved.

  5. Show cause notice was issued to the petitioner according to Rules and the petitioner submitted his representation and thereafter the Chief Secretary to the Government of Tripura by order of the Governor passed the order of punishment dated 01.11.2010 (Annexure-19 to the writ petition). The impugned order of punishment passed by the Chief Secretary, by order of the Governor reads as follows:-

    "GOVERNMENT OF TRIPURA

    FOREST DEPARTMENT

    ORDER

    WHEREAS disciplinary proceedings were drawn up against Shri Narendra Debbarma, Forester (now Retired) under Rule-9 of CCS(Pension) Rules, 1972 vide memo No. F. 19(686)/Vig/For-07/9551-54 dated 25.07.2009 on the charges that the said Sri Debbarma while functioning as Beat Officer, Dyke-IV under Tirthamukh Range under Gumti Forest Division, Jatanbari willfully neglected his duty by not doing the Government works assigned to him in accordance with the norms/orders of Forest Department and general financial rules and thus, acted in a manner unbecoming of a Government Servant and to the detriment to Government interest by misappropriation and defalcation of Government money to the tune of Rs. 3,72,375/-. The A.O. Sri Narendra Debbarma, Forester (now Retd.) had also failed to perform duties, and did not carry out plantation and forestry related works as entrusted to him as per specifications and norms.

    AND

    WHEREAS, Shri Debbarma submitted a representation dated 06.08.2009 alongwith Medical Certificate and prayed for 1(one) month time for submission of his written statement of defence. However, he failed to submit any representation after expiry of the stipulated time. As per rules the matter was referred to the Inquiring Authority Sri G.R. Paul, IPS, Chief Conservator of Forests, Southern Circle, Udaipur to enquire into the charges and submit his findings, vide No. F. 19(686)/Vig/For-2007/16821-27 dated, 14.10.2009.

    AND

    WHEREAS, the Inquiring Authority has submitted his findings dated 30.04.2010. According to the findings of Inquiring Authority, the charges levelled against Shri Debbarma have been established. As per Rule 15(2) of CCS(CC & A) Rules, 1965, a copy of the findings of the Inquiring Authority was sent to Shri Debbarma vide letter No. F. 19(686)/Vig/For-07/2416-19 dated 06.05.2010 giving him an opportunity to submit representation, if any on the findings of Inquiring Authority. Consequently, the said A.O. Shri Debbarma has submitted a representation dated 14.05.2010.

    The contention raised by Sri Debbarma in his representation does not provide any extenuating circumstances against the findings of Inquiring Authority. The contention of the representation is not tenable as the entire evidence on record has properly...

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