1. This intra court appeal is directed against the judgment dated 9.10.2017 in W.P.(C).No.5805/2012. The appellant was the third respondent therein. The first respondent herein filed the said writ petition seeking quashment of Ext.P3 order passed by the second respondent viz., the State of Kerala by which his appointment as General Manager of the third respondent Corporation was cancelled and he was terminated with immediate effect. The learned Single Judge considered the rival contentions and passed the impugned judgment whereby and where under Ext.P3 order cancelling the appointment of the first respondent herein/writ petitioner was set aside. On 7.3.2018, when this matter came up for admission, a Division Bench of this Court directed the learned Government Pleader to get instructions as to whether the State of Kerala is desirous to challenge the impugned judgment and whether the Government had taken any step in that regard. The learned Government Pleader submitted that the order passed in that regard was duly intimated to the Government and no instruction is forthcoming. Be that as it may, it is a fact that as against the impugned judgment passed on 9.10.2017, no appeal has been, hitherto, preferred by the second respondent, the State of Kerala. As noticed hereinbefore, this appeal has been preferred by the additional third respondent in the writ petition. The third respondent viz., the appellant was a candidate who participated in the same selection process by which the writ petitioner was selected for appointment and admittedly, in the rank list published pursuant thereto, he was assigned only rank No.3 whereas the writ petitioner was assigned rank No.1. While considering the scope of this appeal, we cannot lost sight of the order by which the appellant herein was impleaded as a party to the writ petition viz., the order in I.A.No.8185/2017 in W.P.(C).No.5805/2012. By virtue of his position as the first rank holder in the said list, the first respondent herein was appointed as General Manager of the third respondent Corporation in the year 2011 and he joined the said post on 14.3.2011. Copy of Ext.P3 order whereby the appointment of the first respondent/writ petitioner was cancelled was not seen actually served on him. In the writ petition itself, in that regard it is stated that the petitioner came to know about the factum of issuance of Ext.P3 order by the second respondent herein terminating his service, on 16.12.2011. It is also stated therein that said order was not communicated by the appointing authority and it was not published in the website of the Department. The writ petition was filed in the year 2012 and the appellant herein who was unsuccessful candidate in the selection process filed I.A.No.8185/2017 in the above mentioned writ petition only in the year 2017 seeking for his impleadment as additional third respondent in the writ petition. On 20.9.2017, the learned Single Judge had passed an order in the said I.A. It would reveal that the learned Single Judge took note of the fact that the notification concerned was issued on 6.8.2010 and in pursuance thereof, the writ petitioner was selected and appointed to the post of General Manager of the third respondent Corporation. The learned Single Judge had also taken note of the fact that none of the candidates who had partaken in the selection process challenged the notification as also the selection process. In the said order, it is stated that after the change of Government, appointment to the post of General Manager of the Corporation was reviewed and consequently, the order impugned in the writ petition viz., Ext.P3 was passed. The learned Single Judge also took note of the fact that though the writ petition challenging the said order was filed as far back in the year 2012, the appellant herein came up, seeking for his impleadment in the writ petition only after a lapse of five years since the filing of the aforesaid writ petition. Taking into account all such aspects, it was ordered there under that right of audience could be given to the appellant herein only as an intervener and furthermore, it was specifically made clear that the appellant herein would be having only the right to support the order passed by the Government and not beyond that. It was also held there under:-
“The applicant cannot raise new contentions in as much as the fact that such a challenge if made independently would be rejected by this Court on account of laches as challenge is after seven years of selection.
Thus, while allowing this application for impleading, it is made clear that the impleading petitioner cannot take up any plea regarding the validity of notification as well as the selection procedure.”
2. The aforesaid proem is intended only to bring forth the manner in which the appellant who remained inertly in the matter now, innovates his locus stand, to challenge the appointment of the first respondent herein after accepting the order dated 20.9.2017 in I.A No.8185/2017 in W.P.(C) No.5805/2012. The factual backdrop, narrated above would reveal that the appellant who had partaken in the selection process whereby the first respondent/writ petitioner was selected and appointed as General Manager unsuccessfully, now seeks to mount challenge against the impugned judgment passed by the learned Single Judge as if it is an appeal preferred against the judgment in the writ petition filed by him challenging the appointment of the first respondent herein, the notification, the selection process and the very amendment of the Rules based on which the notification which culminated in the appointment of the first respondent was issued. As noticed hereinbefore, the notification viz., Ext.P1 which culminated in the appointment of the first respondent herein was issued on 6.8.2010. The qualification and experience therefore, going by the said notification, read as follows:-
“Degree in Textile Technology with not less than 12 years' experience in industry, of which at least 5 years should be at Senior Managerial level like Head of Dept in a large Textile Mill OR Diploma in Textile Technology with not less than 15 years' experience, of which at least 5 years should be at Senior Managerial level as above, with good working knowledge of Production, Finance & Accounts, Administration, Labour issues etc. in a large Textile Mill of capacity of at least 30,000 spindles OR MBA with 10 years' post qualification experience including at least 3 years at CEO level.”
3. Obviously, the appellant as also the first respondent/writ petitioner and 11 others responded to the notification and all of them were interviewed by a duly constituted selection committee. It was pursuant to such interview, the ranked list in which the first respondent was assigned the first rank and the appellant herein was assigned third rank, was drawn. The first respondent was offered the appointment and on its acceptance, he joined in the service of the third respondent herein on 14.3.2011. The order impugned in the writ petition would reveal that an enquiry ultimately resulting in Ext.P3 order of cancellation of the appointment of the writ petitioner and his termination were germinated from a complaint filed by the Kerala State Textile Corporation Units Officers Union to the then Minister for Industries, IT & UA, Government of Kerala. Essentially, the contention of the writ petitioner/first respondent before the learned Single Judge was that no enquiry with notice to him and his participation was conducted prior to the issuance of Ext.P3 order dated 16.12.2011. Evidently, the learned Single Judge found nothing on record revealing that he was put on notice prior to his termination. In short, regarding compliance with the principle of natural justice. On coming to know about Ext.P3 whereby his appointment was cancelled and he was ordered to be terminated with immediate effect from the post of General Manager, he approached this Court by filing W.P.(C).No.5805 of 2012. The said writ petition was admitted on 8.3.2012 and an interim order staying operation and implementation of Ext.P3 was passed on that day. The said interim order was then extended until further orders.
4. A counter affidavit has been filed by the first respondent therein/second respondent herein in the writ petition on 22.11.2012 wherein it took up contentions in tune with and in support of Ext.P3 order. The circumstances which necessitated cancellation of the appointment of the writ petitioner and his termination from service were narrated in the said counter affidavit. Conspicuously, nothing is stated therein as to whether any proceeding whatsoever, with notice to the writ petitioner was conducted before cancelling his order of appointment and terminating him from service under Ext.P3. So also, nothing is stated therein as to whether the copy of Ext.P3 was served on the writ petitioner, despite the specific case of the petitioner that it was not served on him. As noticed hereinbefore, on the strength of the interim order passed by this Court staying the implementation of Ext.P3 order, the writ petitioner continued in service of the third respondent as its General Manager. It is after about six years since the appointment of the writ petitioner that the appellant herein had filed the aforementioned I.A. seeking for his impleadment as additional third respondent in the writ petition and as noticed hereinbefore, it was allowed subject to certain conditions. Though it was allowed with such restrictions virtually, limiting his right of audience, the same was not challenged and the undisputed fact is that the appellant herein had contested the case before the Single Judge, within the scope of the order in I.A No.8185/2017 dated 20.9.2017. In other words, without any demour, he participated in the proceedings and contested the matter within the limits and in such circumstances how can he claim any better locus in the appeal?
5. The learned Single Judge considered the rival contentions and ultimately found that the writ petitioner was possessing the qualifications for appointment as General Manager of the third respondent-Corporation prescribed in Ext.P1 notification and that Ext.P1 notification was issued in tune with the amended rules. The learned Single Judge had also taken note of the fact that there was absolutely no challenge against the notification from any quarters and that there was no approved rules in the Corporation. It was held therein that the Corporation being an incorporated body, its business could be done through resolution passed by the Board of Directors. It is common case that the Board of Directors fixed the qualification for appointment to the post of General Manager along with qualification for appointment to various other posts as far back in the year 2004 and sent it for approval of the second respondent-Government. Thus, going by the undisputed position, the qualification for appointment to various posts including the post of General Manager of the Corporation was prescribed by the Board of Directors. The draft Rules prepared in that regard by the Board of Directors and sent for approval of the Government, gathered dust and it is a fact that till now, no order has been passed by the Government thereon. While so, the Board of Directors who fixed the qualification for various posts including the post of General Manager thought it fit to include another alternative qualification for appointment to the post of General Manager. Consequently, on 21.5.2010, in the meeting of the Board of Directors, it was resolved to amend the basic qualification for the post of General Manager in Malabar Spinning and Weaving Mills, Kozhikode. Consequently, MBA with 10 years' post qualification experience including at least 3 years at CEO level has been prescribed as an alternative qualification for appointment to the post of General Manager. It is only after bringing such amendment in the recruitment rules that Ext.P1 notification dated 6.8.2010 was issued. It was in such circumstances that in Ext.P1 notification, three alternative qualifications had been prescribed for appointment to the post of General Manager and in other words, the qualification of MBA with 10 years post qualification experience including at least three years at CEO level was also prescribed as a qualification for appointment to the said post. It is in response to the said notification that the writ petitioner, the appellant herein and others had responded and participated in the interview conducted therefore. It is not as if the amendment was brought in after the notification. All these aspects were taken into account by the learned Single Judge. In paragraph 6 of the impugned judgment, the learned Single Judge took note of the submission made by the standing counsel for the corporation that there was no approved rules governing the appointments in the Corporation. The fact that the draft rules submitted for approval by the Government in the year 2004 is still pending consideration before the Government was also brought to the notice of the learned Single Judge. While so, in its meeting held on 21.5.2010, the Board of Directors amended the draft rules and included the aforementioned qualification which was prescribed as the alternative qualification and it is only thereafter that Ext.P1 notification was issued on 6.8.2010. It is to be noted that these aspects are not at all disputed. There is no case, for the official respondents in the counter affidavit filed by the second respondent herein-Government that the original drafts were approved or that they were rejected. It is in such circumstances that the learned Single Judge went on to consider the issues on the premise that no approved rules are in existence governing the appointments in the Corporation and therefore, it could not be said that the appointments were made in violation of the rules. The learned Single Judge had also taken note of the fact that the Board of Directors who fixed qualification for appointment to the post of General Manager had subsequently amended it to incorporate the aforementioned qualification as an alternative qualification for appointment to the post of General Manager. The notification was admittedly issued in tune with the amendment brought to the draft rules. Taking into account all such aspects, the learned Single Judge opined that in the absence of challenge against the notification, the sole question to be considered is whether the appointment of the writ petitioner/first respondent herein was irregular or not. Taking into account the said situation prevalent in the Corporation as regards the service conditions of its employees including the General manager, the learned Single Judge held that the qualification to be prescribed for effecting appointment of its employees, is within the domain of the Corporation. Furthermore, it was observed that if the Government were of the view that such qualification prescribed by the Board of Directors of the Corporation were insufficient, the Government could have intervened in the matter and declined the approval sought for. Consequently, it was held that the appointment effected could not be rendered invalid by the Government assigning the ground that the appointee pursuant to Ext.P1 notification lacks sufficient qualification. Consequently, it was held that the appointment of the writ petitioner made based on the amended rule could not have been interfered with on the ground that fixation of the qualification, was not proper. Obviously, as per the impugned judgment, the learned single Judge found that there is no case for the Government that appointment of the writ petitioner was tainted with mala fides or that his appointment was an outcome of favouritism shown to him. The learned Single Judge further observed:-
“Rightly or wrongly, the employer may fix wrong norms for the post. But, unless and until that is corrected either before selection or before appointment, that cannot be interfered after the appointment is made. Further, there is nothing on record to show that the qualification now amended is anyhow unsuited to a person to hold the post of General Manager. The competency of a person to hold the post of General Manager sometime depends upon the over all experience and exposure in different fields. It is not necessary that experience in particular industrial field alone. The petitioner is having a case that due to modernisation, a person with overall talent is required to become a General Manager instead of a person having qualification on the specified area of textile mills. The vision of a person is not based on specific understanding in a specific filed (sic.field) The fixation of present qualification in fact appears to be not too unrelated to the post. The prescription is MBA with 10 years post qualification experience of which three year experience as Chief Executive Officer level cannot be said not related to the post. It is the management skill that matters to be reckoned to hold the post of General Manager. This Court cannot say that the amended qualification is wholly unrelated to the post of General Manager. Therefore, this Court is of the view that the Government could not have interfered in the matter of appointment merely on the ground that the amended qualification is improper.
6. The learned Single Judge further observed that in the impugned order the Government mentioned that the Board had given the petitioner first position bypassing all the other candidates having the required qualifications for the post and in fact, such observation was made without making any comparative analysis of the candidates and also without analysing the criteria adopted in the selection process. It was also held that interview is an objective analysis of the capability and capacity of the candidates interviewed and in such circumstances unless there is some vitiating element in the selection process, the Government could not have interfered with the selection made, in the circumstances. It is the consideration of all the aforesaid aspects that resulted in the impugned judgment whereby the writ petition was allowed and Ext.P3 order was set aside.
7. The learned counsel for the appellant opened his argument seeking admission of this appeal raising various contentions. As an abundant caution, we put a question to the learned counsel as to whether the appellant could be permitted to raise all contentions as if the impugned judgment is one passed in a writ petition filed by him challenging either the amendment of the rules by which the third alternative qualification was introduced in the rules or the notification based on which selection was made as also against the appointment of the first respondent/writ petitioner. We put the said question taking note of the fact that while allowing his application for impleadment, it was made it clear by the learned Single Judge that what is actually granted is only a right of audience as an intervener and taking note of the fact that after participating in the selection process without any demur despite the alleged defects in the notification (if at all a defect) being an unsuccessful candidate and then, remained in silence for about 6 years, he could not be permitted to take up any plea regarding validity of notification as well as selection process. The learned counsel rightly replied that he would confine his arguments only based on Ext.P3 as according to him a rightful decision was made by the Government there under.
8. Before considering the various contentions raised by the learned counsel for the appellant to mount challenge against the judgment passed by the learned Single Judge as also to support Ext.P3 order, we are of the view that another vital aspect with respect to Ext.P3 order has to be gone into. This aspect is evident and virtually available for consideration in the light of the pleadings of the party. In the writ petition, it is categorically stated by the writ petitioner/first respondent herein that prior to the passing of Ext.P3 order, no enquiry with notice to him was conducted. Though the writ petition carries such a contention, it was not at all countered or resisted by the second respondent herein in its counter affidavit filed in the writ petition or even thereafter. What is stated therein is that the order was communicated to the second respondent viz., the third respondent herein which is the employer of the writ petitioner. In other words, there is absence of any denial with respect to the pointed contention raised by the writ petitioner that the impugned order cancelling his appointment and ordering his termination with immediate effect was not one passed after conducting any enquiry with notice to him. Above all, it is to be noted that even prior to the passing of the said order, going by the rival contentions, no notice was issued to the first respondent. The indisputable factual situation obtained in this case would reveal that the writ petitioner was appointed in pursuance of a notification inviting application for appointment to the post of General Manager under the third respondent. In the said notification, MBA with 10 years' post qualification experience including at least 3 years at CEO level is also prescribed as one of the qualifications. Evidently, it is on satisfaction that he is having one of the prescribed qualifications for consideration for appointment to the said post that along with other candidates he was called for interview and interviewed. It is based on a subjective analysis of the capability and capacity of the candidates who took part in the selection process that a select list was finally drawn. It is also not in dispute that the writ petitioner stood first in the interview and consequently, he was ranked first in the ranked list. The appellant herein who had also participated in the selection process was placed only at Sl.No.3 in the said list. It is thereafter that the appointment was effected. In the contextual situation, it is relevant to refer to a decision of a Division Bench of this Court in Ajith Kumar K.V v. State of Kerala and others [ILR 2017 (3) Kerala 181] wherein this Court held that an order or action taken in violation of the principles of natural justice would be void ab initio and in such eventuality, the action or order should be set aside and the authorities be directed to reconsider the matter afresh. We may hasten to add that we will consider the question whether the authorities should be directed to reconsider the matter afresh, in view of the facts and circumstances obtained in this case. In the case on hand, as noticed hereinbefore, the first respondent/writ petitioner responded to Ext.P1 notification, called for an interview and based on the interview conducted and taking into account his position as No.1 in the rank list, he was offered with the order of appointment. He accepted the same and he joined the service of the third respondent. In such circumstances, and that too in the absence of a finding to the effect that the selection process is vitiated, how could the appointment be nullified. It is nobody's case that the termination of service of the writ petitioner was pursuant to initiation of disciplinary proceedings. Admittedly, no disciplinary proceedings had been initiated against the writ petitioner and it is evident from Ext.P3 itself that basis for cancellation of the order of his appointment and consequential termination from service is the finding that he was not possessing the qualification for appointment to the post of General Manager. The learned counsel for the appellant contended that the first respondent was also not possessing required experience in textile industry. Such a contention was also taken by the learned Government Pleader before the learned Single Judge as can be seen from the impugned judgment. At the same time, the fact is that no such reason has been assigned in Ext.P3 and no such contention has been taken on behalf of the second respondent even in its counter affidavit. The position of law is that when an order is passed assigning various reasons, a fresh reason cannot be supplemented by way of an affidavit. In this case, even such a reason was not supplemented by an affidavit by the Government, for cancellation of the order of appointment. That apart, it is also relevant to note that the third alternative qualification prescribed does not require experience in Textile industry, going by Ext.P1 notification. In such circumstances and also taking note of the fact that the appellant cannot be permitted to argue as if it is open to him to raise all such contentions in view of the fact that right conferred on him while passing the earlier order virtually restricted his right to raise such contentions and therefore, the said contention of the petitioner need not be gone into. At any rate, the Government in Ext.P3 order got no such case and further that the Government did not prefer any appeal against the judgment in question. Obviously, the cancellation of the appointment of the writ petitioner was an outcome of the finding that he was lacking the required qualification. It is nobody's case that the writ petitioner was lacking all the three prescribed qualifications and to be precise, he got none of them.
9. We are of the view that it is only worthwhile to extract paragraph 2 of the impugned Ext.P3 order for a proper consideration of all the aforesaid aspects and it reads thus:-
2. In view of the Government decision to review all the appointments made after 1.11.2011 (Decision (8) of 18.5.2011) Government have decided to review the above appointments and an enquiry was ordered into the allegation accordingly.
10. Reference No.2 in Ext.P3 is a petition dated 25.6.2011 from the Secretary, Kerala State Textile Corporation Units Officers Union to the Hon'ble Minister for Industries, IT & UA, Government of Kerala. Thus, it is evident that an enquiry was ordered which ultimately culminated in Ext.P3 order on a governmental decision to review all the appointments made after 1.11.2011 and the petition dated 25.6.2011 from Kerala State Textile Corporation Units Officers Union. Even in the aforesaid circumstances, obviously, Government had not thought it fit at least to conduct an enquiry with the participation of the writ petitioner or at least to serve a copy of the enquiry report so as to enable him to give an explanation on the findings arrived at in the enquiry. Above all, in this case, the shocking aspect is that not even a notice was issued to the writ petitioner before cancellation of his appointment and ordering termination of his service forthwith. Taking into account the reasons that persuaded the second respondent herein to review the appointment of the petitioner, it is evident that it is based on the governmental decision to review all the appointments made after 1.11.2011. In the contextual situation, it is relevant to refer to a decision of the Apex Court in State of Haryana v. State of Panjab reported in 2002 (2) SCC 507. While deprecating the vote bank politics, it was held:-
The Constitution conceives of a Government to be manned by the representatives of the people, who get themselves elected in an election. The decisions taken at the governmental level should not be so easily nullified by a change of Government and by some other political party assuming power, particularly when such a decision affects some other State and the interest of the nation as a whole. It cannot be disputed that so far as the policy is concerned, a political party assuming power is entitled to engraft the political philosophy behind the party, since that must be held to be the will of the people. But in the matter of governance of a State or in the matter of execution of a decision taken by a previous Government, on the basis of a consensus arrived at, which does not involve any political philosophy, the succeeding Government must be held duty-bound to continue and carry on the unfinished job rather than putting a stop to the same.
11. It is to be noted that the Apex Court made such an observation with respect to an action nullifying the decision taken up at governmental level pursuant to change of Government by the successor Government. In paragraph 14 of the decision in Ashwani Kumar and others v. State of Bihar and others [AIR 1996 SC 2833], the Apex Court held:-
It would thus be settled law that existence of law or statutory rules made under proviso to Article 309 of the Constitution is not a precondition either to create a post or to fill up that post; Government having legislative backing on the subject, has executive power to lay down the conditions of service and prescribed procedure for appointment to the post or vacancies in accordance therewith. Simultaneously, the Government would be entitled to create posts. The instructions and the procedure thus laid down would be subject to law made by the Legislature or rules made under proviso to Article 309. They could be amended by subsequent instructions. They may supplant the rules. But they should be consistent with the rights guaranteed under Articles 14 and 16(1) of the Constitution.
12. We are of the view that in this case, when the rule making power is vested with the Corporation which is a public sector undertaking, the same principle with equal force is applicable to it as well. In short, even in the absence of rules, posts could be created. It could be filled up and amendment of the earlier instructions is also possible provided it is consistent with the rights guaranteed under Articles 14 and 16 of the Constitution. The position that none can be sacked from public employment, upon being inducted into it by following a due process of selection without adhering to the recognized procedure under the relevant rules is founded on the salutory principle of natural justice. In State of Haryana and Ors. v. Piara Singh and Ors. [(1993) IILLJ 937 SC], the Apex Court held:-
The Court comes into picture only to ensure observance of fundamental rights, statutory provisions, rules and other instructions, if any, governing the conditions of service.
In such circumstances, when once it is found that a person was inducted into any public employment after a due process of selection, he could be sacked from the said post only by adhering to the recognised procedures under the relevant rules certainly founded on the principles of natural justice. When once it is found that there is blatant violation of the principles of natural justice owing to failure to adhere to the procedures prescribed for termination from service the Court must step in. In the case on hand, the learned Single Judge virtually considered all the aforesaid aspects. It was held that the power to effect appointment after following the procedure would not violate the principle embedded under Articles 14 and 16 of the Constitution if appointments were effected and such an appointee cannot shown the door without complying with the principles of natural justice. We do not find any reason to hold that the learned Single Judge had gone wrong in holding that the appointment of the writ petitioner/first respondent herein was one made after complying with the procedures, rather, the rules governin
Please Login To View The Full Judgment!
g/regulating appointments under the Corporation. It is to be noted that the amended rule was also not under challenge. So also, notification issued in tune with such amended rules was not under challenge. There is no allegation as to the effect that the selection process was vitiated by mala fides. In such circumstances, the appointment of the writ petitioner/first respondent herein could not have been said to be one which is ab initio void owing to illegality in selection procedure. In the case on hand, we appreciate the stand of the State Government in realizing and recognising the position earlier enunciated by us that appointments effected cannot be reviewed on a wholesale basis by a successor government unless sustainable reasons exist. Evidently, it is the said realisation that made the State Government to desist from challenging the judgment in question. In short, in this case, though Ext.P3 order issued by the Government was interfered with and set aside by this Court, the Government have not thought it fit to challenge the judgment in appeal. In such circumstances and for the foregoing reasons, we are of the view that the appellant, who is an unsuccessful candidate in the selection process, cannot succeed in this appeal. As noticed hereinbefore, he had not filed any independent petition challenging the appointment and it is about 6 years since the appointment and about 5 years since the filing of the writ petition that he got impleaded in the writ petition from which this appeal arose. In the contextual situation, it is relevant to refer to a decision in Ashok Kumar and another v. State of Bihar and others [(2017) 4 SCC 357]. Going by the dictum laid down therein, if there is no glaring or patent illegality in a selection process nor any prejudice was caused to the candidates concerned thereby persons who consciously take part in the selection process could not thereafter turn around and challenge method of selection and its outcome. Though the learned counsel for the appellant attempted to mount challenge that the prescription of qualification, rather, insertion of the third qualification as an alternative qualification, is not liable to be looked into at all, in the aforementioned circumstances, we are of the considered view that after participating in the selection process and also owing to his failure to challenge the amendment as also the notification, this Court need not go into that question any further. Taking note of the conditions based on which his application for impleadment was allowed also such question need not be gone into. In such circumstances, we do not find any reason to interfere with the judgment of the learned Single Judge. Considering the fact that the application for impleadment was allowed by this Court in the writ petition subject to certain riders, the third respondent/appellant herein could not legally raise all contentions because of his failure to make appropriate challenge within appropriate time against the said order, against the amendment as also the notification and also taking into account the inordinate delay in the matter of his approaching this Court and above all taking into account the time consumed by the appellant in arguing the matter, we were about to order an exemplary cost while dismissing this writ appeal. However, taking note of the submissions made by the counsel in that regard, we are refraining ourselves from imposing any cost. This writ appeal is accordingly dismissed.