OA-755/2013. Case: Sh. Ajit Singh Vs Delhi Development Authority through its Vice-Chairman, Engineer Member, DDA and Commissioner (Personnel), DDA. Central Administrative Tribunal

Case NumberOA-755/2013
CounselFor Appellant: Sh. R.A. Sharma, Advocate and For Respondents: Sh. Manish Garg, Advocate
JudgesShekhar Agarwal, Member (A) and Dr. Brahm Avtar Agrawal, Member (J)
IssueService Law
Judgement DateApril 25, 2014
CourtCentral Administrative Tribunal


Shekhar Agarwal, Member (A), (Principal Bench, New Delhi)

  1. Following relief has been sought in this O.A.:-

    (a) Quash and set aside the suspension order dated 17.12.2009 (Annexure A-1);

    (b) Quash and set aside the suspension review order [Annexure A-2 (Colly)] and declare applicant's suspension beyond 90 days as illegal and void;

    (c) Direct the respondents to consider the period of applicant's suspension from 17.12.2009 to 18.1.2012 as period spent on duty for all purposes and pay arrears of pay and allowances for the above period.

    Quash the charge sheet dt. 4.7.2011 (Annex. A-3).

    Quash and set aside the penalty order dated 29.8.2012 (Annexure A-4) with all consequential benefits of service including arrears of pay and allowance be restored to the applicant.

    Quash and set aside the appellate order dated 6.2.2013 (Annexure A-5), with all consequential benefits of service restored to the applicant.

    Pass any other order or orders or directions as deemed fit and proper in the facts and circumstances of the case.

    Allow costs in favour of the applicants.

  2. Facts of the case are that the applicant, who was working as Junior Engineer (Lands Management) with DDA, was placed under suspension on 17.12.2009 on the grounds that disciplinary proceedings were contemplated against him. His suspension was reviewed from time to time vide review orders dated 29.04.2010, 30.07.2010, 04.02.2011 and 08.07.2011. He was reinstated vide order dated 18.01.2012 after decision of the Suspension Review Committee in its meeting held on 12.12.2011. Separately, he was served with a charge sheet on 04.07.2011 containing the following charges:-

    Shri Ajit Singh, JE (Civil), while working in LM (SWZ) during 2008-2010 has failed to comply with orders passed by DD (LM) SWZ in connection with the demolition of the encroachment raised by the Public on the Government Land unauthorisedly. The encroachment was detected by him and report was placed before the DD (LM) SWZ, who further passed on the orders for demolition in respect of 34 cases. Further action as per the directions of the DD (LM) SWZ was required to be taken to execute the demolition programme.

    Inspite of above Sh. Ajit Singh JE has filed wrong statement in the court on behalf of DDA while the court case was filed by the appellant through appeal No. 33/07. He was not empowered to file the reply as his own while order towards this were required to be obtained from the Competent Authority.

    By his above act Shri Ajit Singh, JE (Civil), exhibited lack of absolute devotion to duty, lack of absolute integrity and acted in a manner unbecoming of a Government Servant thereby contravened Regulation 41(i) (ii) and (iii) of DDA Conduct, Disciplinary and Appeal Regulations 1999 applicable to the employees of the Authority.

    2.1. The Inquiry Officer submitted his report on 12.12.2011 in which he found the charges against the applicant to have been proved. The applicant was given a copy of the inquiry report vide order dated 09.02.2012 and was given an opportunity to make a representation against the same. After considering his reply the Disciplinary Authority (DA) passed an order dated 29.08.2012 imposing punishment of reduction by three stages for a period of three years with cumulative effect with further stipulation that he will not earn increments during the period of reduction and after expiry of the period of such reduction, it will have the effect of postponing his future increments. An appeal made against the order of the DA was rejected by the Appellate Authority (AA) on 06.02.2013. The applicant thereafter has filed this O.A. on 28.02.2013.

    2.3. The applicant has challenged both his suspension as well as the punishment imposed upon him. As regards his suspension, he has stated that this was done with a prejudiced mind. Moreover, the reviews of suspension were not carried out on time making continuation of the suspension illegal. The Suspension Review Committee was wrongly informed that the applicant had been placed under deemed suspension and criminal offences were under investigation against him. On these grounds, the applicant has pleaded that the suspension order be quashed and/or the continuation of suspension beyond 90 days be declared as illegal.

    2.4. Before we proceed further on the merits of disciplinary proceedings, we propose to deal with the legality or otherwise of the suspension order and the reviews thereof. We notice from the order dated 17.12.2009 that the applicant was placed under suspension on the grounds that disciplinary proceedings were contemplated against him. We do not find any bias or prejudice against the applicant in this. The disciplinary proceedings were actually instituted against the applicant in which the applicant was even found to be guilty and was punished for the same. Hence, we see no reason to quash the initial order of suspension dated 17.12.2009. However, we find that the first review of suspension was carried out only in the meeting of the Suspension Review Committee held on 21.03.2010 i.e. after the expiry of the period of 90 days and the order extending the suspension was passed only on 29.04.2010. The applicant has claimed that this delayed review was against DDA Regulations as well as Government of India Instructions. He has also claimed that this was in violation of the law laid down by the Hon'ble Supreme Court in the case of UOI Vs. Deepak Mali, 2010(2) SLJ 288 (SC) in which the following has been observed:-

  3. In this case, what is important is that by operation of Sub-Rule (6) of Rule 10 of the 1965 Rules, the order of suspension would not survive after the period of 90 days unless it was extended after review. Since admittedly the review had not been conducted within 90 days from the date of suspension, it became...

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