The Punjab School Education Board (PSEB) has forced its controller of examination and senior legal adviser Sukhwinder Kaur Saroya to retire compulsorily after finding her guilty in three major inquiries.
It took the decision on Friday. A detailed order specified that "though she deserves to be shown the door; but the board is considering her services thus far and only retiring her compulsorily". Saroya was to retire in April 2022, otherwise. Saroya can't even move court against this decision, since rules allow the board to retire any employee after the age of 50 or 20 years of service. In Saroya's case, she fulfils both conditions.
The board order said Saroya had received fair hearings, and she had not mended her attitude even after many warnings. The main charges against her include taking away an empty steel cabinet from the legal cell without proper gate pass. The incident dates back to November 21, 2011, and the inquiry report suggests that Saroya signed the gate-pass book on her own and took away the cabinet to her house in a truck. The investigation took two years but it found Saroya guilty, in 2013.
Another matter relates to Saroya's stopping the salary of the-then board secretary in 2011, Balwinder Singh. In October 2011, she moved the Punjab and Haryana high court against the decision of appointing Balwinder Singh as board secretary. Meanwhile, the board decided to continue to pay Balwinder Singh as usual even when the matter was is in the high court. However, Saroya overruled the decision, and stopped the salary of Balwinder Singh. This investigation also was closed in 2013.
Bribery is one of the most serious charges against her. An information technology company accused her of demanding `50,000 for issuing a written agreement about computer-repair contract, and the inquiry committee held her guilty.