MRS. MANJULIKA GAUTAM, MEMBER (A):
1. The applicant in this OA is working in the Central Economic Intelligence Bureau. He joined in 1988 as Muster Roll worker and acquired the status of temporary worker w.e.f. 8.12.1993. On 29.07.1997, the respondents made an offer of the post of Sepoy to the applicant. There was no advertisement for the post and only a blank attestation form was provided to the applicant by the respondents. In the form, there was a column where the applicant had to state whether he belonged to SC/ST community or not. The applicant claimed that his father had procured an ST certificate as they belonged to `Konde’ tribe in Orissa, issued by the Executive Magistrate, Alipore, 24 Parganas, West Bengal. It is also admitted fact that the applicant was appointed to the post of Sepoy vide order dated 14.08.1997 on a `General’ vacancy.
2. The applicant was served with a suspension order dated 26.12.2005 under sub rule 1 of Rule 10 of the CCS (Classification, Control & Appeal Rules, 1965 (Annexure A-10). Accordingly, a show cause notice was issued to him, alleging that he had secured employment as Sepoy by submitting copy of the ST certificate which was fake. When the same was sent for verification, the Sub Divisional Officer Sadar, Alipore vide its letter dated 31.10.2005 intimated that the aforesaid ST certificate was not issued by their office. Thus, according to the show cause notice, this verification report showed that the applicant had secured employment in the department on the strength of the forged S.T. certificate and committed fraud on the Government at the time of joining the service. The applicant replied to the show cause notice vide his letter dated 31.07.2006. However, the respondents vide order dated 9.11.2006 took a decision of cancellation of appointment of the applicant as Sepoy since its inception i.e. 14.08.1997 and ordered for immediate dismissal of the applicant from service. The applicant preferred an appeal dated 21.12.2006, which was rejected vide order dated 26.10.2007, upholding the order-in-original. The applicant filed a revision dated 17.04.2008 and vide order dated 30.12.2009, which is impugned in this OA, the revision was also dismissed. Aggrieved by this, the applicant has filed the present OA seeking the following relief:
'a) Set aside and quash the impugned Show Cause Notice bearing no. C.No. VIII (I & V) 26/44/2005/905 and quash the proceedings initiated against the applicant thereunder.
b) Set aside and quash order-in-original, order-in-appeal and impugned order-in revision.
c) Allow consequential relief;
d) Pass such other or further order(s) in favour of the applicant as this Hon’ble Tribunal may deem fit and proper in the facts and circumstances of the instant case and in the interest of justice.'
3. The main fact on which the applicant is relying is that he did not secure employment on the basis of ST certificate because he was appointed on a `general’ post. It was only incidental that in the form which he was asked to fill whether he was SC/ST, he showed his status of ST and supplied the certificate, which is allegedly false. He has also raised the issue that the ST certificate was issued by the Executive Magistrate, Alipore, 24 Parganas whereas it was sent for verification to the Sub Divisional Officer Sadar, Alipore.
4. In the counter affidavit filed by the respondents, it has been stated that the S.T. certificate dated 26.04.1988, which had been submitted by the applicant and which showed him as belonging to `Konde’ tribe, was sent for verification to District Magistrate, 24 Parganas, West Bengal. Reply was received from the Sub Divisional Officer Sadar, SC/ST/OBC Certificate Cell, Alipore, 24 Parganas dated 31.10.2005, which states that the S.T. certificate sent for verification was not issued from that end. Thus it is apparent that a forged and invalid certificate was submitted by the applicant. Therefore, the respondents have imposed the penalty of declaring his appointment as Sepoy invalid from 1997. The operative part of the order, in original, is as follows:
'I, therefore, hereby order for the cancellation of appointment of Shri Akhil Kumar as Sepoy since its inception i.e. 14/08/1997 and order for his immediate dismissal from service. I further order for recovery of all payments, remunerations and monitory equivalent of perks derived by him illegally during this period.'
5. Rejoinder has been filed by the applicant reiterating the earlier points raised by him in the OA.
6. We have heard both the learned counsel and perused the record on file.
7. It is very clear that an S.T. certificate was submitted by the applicant at the time he filled the form for his appointment as Sepoy. It is also an admitted fact that he was appointed on a `general’ vacancy and, therefore, his appointment as Sepoy was not done on the basis of S.T. certificate submitted by him. But at the same time, in the form submitted by him, which is placed at Annexure A-8, he has given the following undertaking :
'The furnishing of false information or suppression of any factual information in the Attestation form would be a disqualification, which is likely to render the candidate unfit for employment under the Govt.'
8. In our opinion, it is established beyond doubt that the applicant furnished false information at the time he filled the form, even though this information was not the requirement for filling the post in question. There is no substance in the objection raised by the applicant that the S.T. certificate should have been got verified through the Executive Magistrate, Alipore and not the Sub Divisional Officer Sadar, Alipore as it is seen that the verification has come from the SC/ST/OBC Certificate Cell, Alipore and it is natural presumption that all records of certificates pertaining to 24, Parganas would be available with that Cell. Therefore, the categorical denial that the certificate has not been issued by that office means that there is no such certificate in existence.
9. On the basis of the above findings, we find no fault with the impugned order so far as it relates to cancellation of appointment of the applicant with retrospective effect from 14.08.1997. We are supported by the judgment of the Hon’ble Supreme Court in Vice Chairman, Kendriya Vidyalaya Sanathan Vs. Girdharilal Yadav,
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(2004) 6 SCC 325, wherein it was observed that there was no infirmity in the impugned action of cancellation of appointment on the ground that the caste certificate submitted by the person concerned was an act of fraud. In the order in original, however, it has further been ordered that recovery of all payments, remunerations and monitory equivalent of perks derived by the applicant, be made. We find this part of the impugned order to be unjust and inequitable as the applicant has performed the work and duty of the post. Accordingly, we quash the impugned order to the extent it relates to recovery of payments and remunerations during the period. 10. OA stands disposed of with the above observations. No costs.