At, High Court of Judicature at Allahabad
By, THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE ARUN TANDON
For the Appearing Parties: Amit Saxena, G.C. Shukla, Advocates.
1. HEARD Shri P.N. Saxena, Senior Advocate assisted by Shri Amit Saxena, learned counsel for the petitioner, learned Standing Counsel on behalf of respondent nos. 1 and 2 and Shri R.K. Ojha, Advocate on behalf of respondent no. 3.
2. PETITIONER-Committee of Management of Sri Kailash Nath Balika Vidyalaya Inter College, Kanpur Nagar seeks quashing of the order dated 9th March, 2012 passed by the District Inspector of Schools, 2nd, Kanpur Nagar, where under he has proceeded to disapprove the resolution of the Committee of Management, suspending the respondent no. 3 who was working as Principal of the said institution, p
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nding enquiry into the charges. The District Inspector of Schools under the order impugned has recorded three reasons for disapproving the suspension.“A. Respondent no. 3 has been working as Principal in aforesaid institution since 1999 and there has been no complaint in respect of her work and performance. She has been meted out such treatment only because she had refused to realize fee towards computers etc. from the students in the year 2009.B. Three member enquiry committee constituted has not been shown to consist of members of the Committee of Management only and;C. The charges as levelled against the petitioner, cannot even on being found proved result in a major penalty and that no preliminary enquiry had been conducted before suspending the petitioner.”The District Inspector of Schools has, however, observed that since a reply to charge-sheet has been filed, the enquiry proceedings may continue. Learned counsel for the management, Shri P.N. Saxena, contended that all the three grounds mentioned in the order of District Inspector of Schools are legally not sustainable. In respect of the first ground he submits that merely because the respondent no. 3 had not given any occasion for a complaint in respect of her working in previous years, it will not mean that the charges as now noticed by the Committee of Management are without foundation or they do not require any departmental enquiry. The allegation of malafide against the management are not supported by any evidence. Vague allegations cannot be the reason for holding that the management had not acted fairly in suspending the petitioner. So far as ground no. 2 is concerned, it is pointed out that the enquiry committee as constituted comprising of Ms. Uttara Sharma, Shri Ramakant Shukla and Shri Deepak Maheswari, all of whom are members of Committee of Management of the institution and even otherwise, even if there is some defect in the enquiry committee it cannot be the basis for interfering with the suspension. He lastly points out that the charges against the respondent no. 3 amongst other include charge of embezzlement of money collected from the students and, therefore, if the said charges is found proved a major penalty can be inflicted and that a preliminary enquiry was held.Shri R.K. Ojha, learned counsel for the respondent no. 3, in his reply submits that there is no material worth consideration to on the basis of which the charge of embezzlement of money could be sustained, similarly he points out that the other charges are also without foundation and, therefore, the conclusion drawn by the District Inspector of Schools may not be interfered with. It is his case that on facts on record there is little or no basis for suspending the petitioner.3. I have heard learned counsel for the parties and examined the records. This Court finds force in contentions raised by learned counsel for the petitioner.Merely because the Principal had worked diligently and honestly in previous years it cannot lead to a conclusion that the charges as now noticed are unjustified or that the action taken by the management after receiving complaints in respect of her working now, which include the charge of embezzlement of money are not to be enquired. This Court may further record that the allegation of malafide against the management has noticed in the order are too vague and general to be accepted. Allegations of malafide are essentially allegations of fact which are not only be alleged but also to be established by cogent evidences. The order impugned does not refer to any material fact for treating the action of the management as malafide. The issue as to whether the final enquiry committee constituted for enquiring into the charges against the respondent no. 3 is concerned, even if found to be defective cannot be the reason for interfering with the order of suspension. The defect, if any, in the enquiry committee, always can be cured at a later stage. It is the case of the management that all the three members of the enquiry committee are members of the Committee of Management of the institution and the finding to the contrary is factually incorrect.4. SO far as the reason no. 3 is concerned, as the charge of embezzlement of fee collected from the students as well as the charge of gross insubordination if found proved could lead to a major penalty. This Court is not expressing any opinion on the merits of the charges in this stage.In view of the aforesaid, none of the three grounds in the order of the District Inspector of Schools can be legally sustained. The order impugned is hereby set aside.Let the District Inspector of Schools reconsider the matter within the parameters of Section 16 G (5) as explained by the High Court in various judgments preferably within four weeks from the date a certified copy of this order filed before him. He shall afford opportunity of hearing to the Committee of Management as well as the respondent-Principal. He shall pass a reasoned order. The Committee of the Management of the institution is directed to conclude the enquiry preferably within six weeks from today and to submit his proposal of punishment, if any, to the District Inspector of Schools for being forwarded to the U.P. Secondary Education Service Selection Board immediately thereafter.5. IN view of the aforesaid, this writ petition is allowed. Till the passing of afresh orders by the District Inspector of Schools as directed above, status-quo as on the date with regard to the office of the principal shall be maintained by the parties.
" 2012 (5) ADJ 555"