WP(C) No. 227 of 2011. Case: Paresh Chandra Pal Vs The State of Tripura and Ors.. Tripura High Court

Case NumberWP(C) No. 227 of 2011
Party NameParesh Chandra Pal Vs The State of Tripura and Ors.
CounselFor Appellant: B.B. Das, Advocate and For Respondents: B. Dutta, Advocate
JudgesS.C. Das, J.
IssueCriminal Law
Judgement DateJanuary 12, 2017
CourtTripura High Court

Judgment:

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

  1. Heard learned counsel, Mr. B.B. Das for the petitioner and learned counsel, Mr. B. Dutta for the respondents.

  2. Respondent No. 2, the Director of Agriculture, Government of Tripura, under Memo. No. F.2-2401(P)/Part-I/8911-8914 dated 19.11.2007(Annexure-4 to the writ petition) initiated a disciplinary proceeding against the petitioner for gross misconduct on the following article of charges:

    Article of charge:-I

    That the said Sri Paresh Chandra Pal, U.D.C. how posted under the disposal of V.S.P.O., Nagicherra while functioning as Cashier/In-charge Store in the office of the Dy. Project Officer(North), Ambassa during the period from 31-8-2000 to 24-1-2006 failed to maintain absolute integrity and devotion to duty and acted in a manner of un-becoming of Govt. servant in so far as Sri Pal did not maintained the Cash Book as well as Stock Register relating to purchase of different Stationary Articles etc. as per norms of the Govt. As per Departmental inquiry report of the three members Committee headed by the than Dr. Abdul Haque, Soil Survey Officer now M.D. THCL. it was detected that a defalcation and mis-appropriation of Govt. money amounting to Rs. 1,47,887/- (Rupees one lakh forty seven thousand eight hundred eighty seven) only was made by Sri Paresh Chandra Pal, Cashier(U.D.C.).

    Thus the above act committed by Sri Paresh Chandra Pal, U.D.C.(Cashier/In-charge Store) now under suspension shown lack of absolute integrity, lack of devotion to Govt. duty and thereby he has violated of Rule 3 of T.C.S.(Conduct) Rules, 1988 and for which Sri Pal rendered himself liable for being charge sheeted for facing enquiry under Rule-14 of C.C.S.(C.C.&A), 1965 r.w. Rule-11 of the Rules ibid.

  3. The Additional Commissioner of Departmental Inquiries, Government of Tripura was entrusted to inquire into the above charges framed against the petitioner.

    In course of inquiry, 5(five) witnesses were examined on behalf of the disciplinary authority(prosecution), namely-PW1, Abdul Haque, PW2 Bishurai Debbarma, PW3 Paresh Ch. Karmakar, PW4 Jogesh Biswas and PW5 Tutan Deb.

    During examination of the aforesaid witnesses following documents were also proved on behalf of the disciplinary authority:

    Exbt. S/1- One memorandum of the Director of Agriculture dt. 04-06-2006.

    Exbt. S/2- Inquiry report jointly submitted by Dr. Abdul Haque, Dy. Director, Agri. and two other members of the committee dt. 20-9-2006.

    Exbt. S/3- Memorandum of the Director of Agriculture dated 20-7-2007.

    Exbt. S/4- 4 Nos. Bill registers for the year 2002 to 2006.

    Exbt. S/5- Cash book for the period from 18-6-2004 to 24-8-2005, 01-10-2002 to 17-06-2004 and 25-8-2005 to 05-04-2006.

    Exbt. S/6- Cash book from 01-10-2002 to 17-6-2004.

    Exbt. S/7- Cash book from 25-8-2005 to 05-04-2006.

    Exbt. S/8- Stock Register for the year 2002 to 2006(4 Nos. Register).

    After the evidence of the disciplinary authority was closed, the charged officer i.e. the petitioner herein(hereinafter mentioned as the petitioner) examined himself as DW1 and in support of his contention he proved one copy of a Memo. dated 03.08.2000 issued by the Deputy Project Officer(North), Ambassa marked as Exbt. D1.

    After recording evidence and hearing arguments of both side, the inquiring officer submitted report to the disciplinary authority holding that the charge framed against the petitioner was proved.

  4. Show cause notice was issued to the petitioner by the respondent No. 2 forwarding a copy of the inquiry report by issuing Memo. dated 07.03.2009, in response to which the petitioner submitted his representation dated 24.03.2009 to respondent No. 2(Annexure-6 to the writ petition), and thereafter considering the report of the inquiring authority and the representation made by the petitioner, the disciplinary authority i.e. the Director of Agriculture issued the impugned office order dated 23.10.2009(Annexure-7 to the writ petition) inflicting punishment on the petitioner.

    The impugned order dated 23.10.2009 reads as follows:

    NO.F.2-2401(P)/Part-II/964-66
    Government of Tripura
    Department of Agriculture

    Dated, Agartala, the 23/10/2009.

    OFFICE ORDER

    WHEREAS, a departmental proceeding was drawn against Sri Paresh Chandra Pal, U.D. Clerk for mis-appropriation of Govt. money, mis-conduct and negligence in Govt. duty vide Deptt. Memo. of even number dated 19-11-2007.

    AND, WHEREAS, the Inquiring Authority found him guilty in the charges of mis-conduct vide his letter NO.F.1171/INQ/Agri/2008/1247 dated 16-12-2008.

    AND, WHEREAS, Sri Paresh Chandra Pal, U.D. Clerk responded to the Departmental memo. of even number dated 7-3-2009 which seems not satisfactory, so, a punishment is inflicted by the undersigned to Sri Paresh Chandra Pal, U.D. Clerk.

    THEREFORE, under 11 of C.C.S.(CC&A) Rules, 1965, the undersigned withholds his 2(two) Nos. periodical increments in the grade with cumulative effect and also instructs to deposit the entire defalcated Govt. money amounting to Rs. 1,47,887/- (Rupees one lakhs forty seven thousand eight hundred eighty seven) only through Treasury Challan which is to be submitted to the Head of Office within 60(sixty) days from the date of receipt of this Order.

    Sd/-
    Eligible
    DIRECTOR OF AGRICULTURE TRIPURA

    To:-

    Sri Paresh Chandra Pal, U.D. Clerk through the Supdt. of Agriculture, Rajnagar, Belonia, South Tripura for compliance.

  5. Aggrieved, the petitioner preferred an appeal to the appellate authority(Principal Secretary to the Government of Tripura) and the appellate authority by order dated 07.05.2011(Annexure-10 to the writ petition) dismissed the appeal and thereby upheld the punishment order passed by the respondent No. 2.

    The impugned order dated 07.05.2011 reads as follows:

    NO.F.2-2401(P)/Part-II/4957-62
    Government of Tripura
    Department of Agriculture

    Dated, Agartala, the 07/05/2011.

    ORDER(on appeal)

    A departmental proceeding was drawn against Sri Paresh Chandra Pal, U.D. Clerk for the charges of defalcation and mis-appropriation of Govt. money amounting to Rs. 1,47,887/- (Rupees one lakh forty seven thousand eight hundred eighty seven) only vide Deptt. Memo. of even number dated 19-11-2007.

    The Inquiring Authority found him guilty against the charges vide his letter NO.F.1171/INQ/Agri/2008/1247 dated 16-12-2008.

    On receipt of the Findings of the Inquiring Authority the Disciplinary Authority after observing all formalities imposed penalty Upon him in the shape of withholding 2(two) Nos. periodical increments in the grade with cumulative effect and instructed to deposit the entire defalcated govt. money amounting to Rs. 1,47,887/- (Rupees one lakh forty seven thousand eight hundred eighty seven) only vide this Deptt. Office order No. F.2-2401(P)-Part-II/964-66 dated 23.10.2009 but on the Context Sri Pal, U.D.C. has made an appeal to the Appellate Authority for kind review of the penalty order of the Director of Agriculture and Appellate Authority heard him personally on 1st June, 2010. Subsequently a show cause Notice was issued to Sri Pal, UDC Vide No. F.2-2401(P)-Part-III/728-29 dated 26.02.2011, where he was asked to explain as to why Addl. Penal rate of interest Rs. 11.25% Per annum shall not be imposed on the defalcated Govt. money of Rs. 1,47,887/- (Rupees one lakh forty seven thousand eight hundred eighty seven) from the date of defalcation and Sri Pal, UDC has submitted his reply to the show cause notice on 09.03.2011.

    Finally, the Appellate Authority after examining all documents, finding, appeal petition, etc. of the instant case come to the conclusion that:-

    1) The procedure laid down in the rules has been complied with.

    2) The findings of the Inquiring Authority are adequately supported by the evidence on record.

    3) The penalty imposed by the Disciplinary Authority is just and proper.

    Considering all above circumstances, the undersigned is in the opinion that...

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