‘Unjust, inequitable’: Supreme Court quashes order to demote Bihar employee 25 years after appointment
The Supreme Court termed as “unjust, inequitable and arbitrary suffering from the vice of unreasonableness” the decision of the authorities to demote Bihar’s Sukh Bilash Thakur from the post of a bill clerk to khalasi 25 years after he was appointed.Updated: Jan 09, 2019 23:54 IST
The Supreme Court on Wednesday quashed a Bihar State Electricity Board order that reverted an employee from the post of a bill clerk to khalasi 25 years after he was appointed. The demotion was done on the ground that he had fraudulently obtained the job in 1981.
A bench led by Justice Arun Misra set aside the government order and termed the allegations against Sukh Bilash Thakur unfounded. It termed “unjust, inequitable and arbitrary suffering from the vice of unreasonableness” the decision of the authorities to demote him.
“Indisputably he was appointed after verification of his qualifications and through the process of a competitive examination followed by an interview. There have been no allegations against him in discharge of his duties as a bill clerk,” the court said.
The bench passed the direction while upholding an appeal filed by Thakur challenging the decision of the board to revert him to the post of khalasi, a class four employee.
In the case at hand, the board had passed an order of reversion against Thakur on August 9, 2007, after he sought to appear in a departmental exam for a higher post. He had completed the requisite 18 years of service to sit for the test.
The order of reversion was passed on a complaint that he had fraudulently obtained the job in 1981 by misrepresenting facts of his qualifications in mathematics.
Thakur’s appeal was dismissed by Patna High Court in 2017. Aggrieved, he approached the top court.
“The appellant had passed the departmental examination in service. It is only when he staked his claim for selection grade, the respondents appear to have woken up from their stupor nearly 25 years later seeking to raise issues with regard to the appointment. Unfortunately, these factors did not fall for consideration by the High Court despite being available on record,” read the judgment, authored by Justice Navin Sinha, the other bench member.
First Published: Jan 09, 2019 23:54 IST