At, High Court of Judicature at Madras
By, THE HONOURABLE CHIEF JUSTICE MR. SANJIB BANERJEE & THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE SENTHILKUMAR RAMAMOORTHY
For the Appellant: S.N. Ravichandran, Advocate. For the Respondents: K.S. Suresh, Government Advocate.
(Prayer: Appeal filed under Clause 15 of the Letters Patent against the order dated 6.10.2020 in W.P.No.13973 of 2020 passed by the learned Single Judge.)Sanjib Banerjee, CJ.1. The grievance of the writ petitioner-appellant is that merely two days prior to his date of superannuation, and on the basis of an audit objection, the writ petitioner was placed on suspension. The writ petitioner contends that at a subsequent stage upon appropriate clarifications being issued, the audit objection was no longer relevant but the petitioner’s pensionary and other dues have not been cleared.2. An order of suspension can never be indefinite. In particular, when an order of suspension is made barely two days prior to the employee’s scheduled date of retirement, disciplinary proceedings must immediately follow or a call taken whether to continue with the suspension. In this case, the indefinite order of suspension has continued far too long.3. Without going into any controversy as to whether the queries raised by the audit have been appropriately answered or not, the respondent employer is directed to pass a speaking order within four weeks from date as to whether the suspension of the writ petitioner continues or not. If the suspension continues, cogent grounds need to be indicated of the act of indiscipline on the part of the writ petitioner. If no grounds on such score exist, the writ petitioner must be discharged from suspension and the rightful dues of the writ petitioner must be cleared without undue delay.W.A.No.27
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of 2021 is disposed of by modifying the judgment and order impugned as indicated above. There will be no order as to costs. Consequently, C.M.P.No.429 of 2021 is closed.