HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE FOR RAJASTHAN AT
S.B. Civil Writ Petition No. 497 / 2016
Onkar Lal Meena S/o. Sh. Mohan Lal Meena, aged about 60 years,
B/c. Meena, R/o. A-28, Patel Nagar, behind Panchayat Samiti
Devli, Tehsil Devli, District Tonk (Raj.).
1. The State of Rajasthan Department of Revenue (Group-I),
Secretariat, Rajasthan, Jaipur through its Secretary.
2. The Chairman, Board of Revenue, Ajmer.
For Petitioner(s) : Mr. H.S. Sidhu.
For Respondent(s) : Dr. Pratishtha Dave, Dy. G.C.
HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE ARUN BHANSALI
This writ petition has been filed by the petitioner aggrieved
against the order dated 05.11.2015 (Annex.-P/7), whereby the
appellate authority has though set aside the order of disciplinary
authority, it has substituted the punishment of reversion from the
post of Tehsildar to Nayab Tehsildar to censure. Further prayer has
been made that respondents be directed to pay full salary and
emoluments to the petitioner for the period of suspension i.e. from
26.10.2012 to 18.18.2014.
The petitioner was served with a charge-sheet (Annex.-P/1),
wherein 3 charges were levelled against the petitioner. After
evidence was led before the inquiry officer, the inquiry officer
found charge No.1 and 3 proved and held that the charge No.2
was not proved. The disciplinary authority by its order dated
23.12.2014 (Annex.-P/4), punished the petitioner with the
punishment of reversion to the post of Nayab Tehsildar and also
ordered that though the period of suspension would be counted
(2 of 5)
for all other purposes, the petitioner would not be entitled to any
amount beyond the subsistence allowances.
Feeling aggrieved, the petitioner filed the appeal. The
appellate authority by its order dated 05.11.2015 (Annex.-P/7)
observed that the petitioner should have conducted himself
appropriately, however, it came to the conclusion that the
punishment imposed was disproportionate and partly accepting
the appeal, set aside the order passed by the disciplinary authority
and imposed the punishment of censure.
It is submitted by learned counsel for the petitioner that the
appellate authority was not justified in imposing the punishment
of censure, once the order passed by the disciplinary authority
was set aside by it. Further submissions were made that the
appellate authority once apparently found the petitioner not guilty
of the charges No. 1 and 3, there was no reason to make
observations based on the charge No.2, which charge was already
decided in favour of the petitioner by the disciplinary authority
and, therefore, the order impugned passed by the appellate
authority imposing punishment of censure deserves to be quashed
and set aside. Further submissions were made that once the order
of disciplinary authority forfeiting the pay allowances during the
period of suspension was set aside by the appellate authority,
there was no reasons for the respondents in not paying the
difference between the subsistence allowances and pay
allowances, to which, the petitioner was entitled for the period of
suspension and on that count, the action of the respondents in
(3 of 5)
this regard is also incorrect and directions deserves to be issued to
them to make payment of the said amount.
Learned counsel for the respondents supported the order
passed by the appellate authority. It was submitted that though
the petitioner was acquitted by the criminal court, still a finding
could have been recorded by the inquiry officer/disciplinary
authority pertaining to the conduct of the petitioner. Further
submissions were made that even if the order of the disciplinary
authority has been set aside, the same has been set aside on the
appellate authority coming to the conclusion that the punishment
imposed was excessive and on no other ground and as the appeal
was party allowed, the denial of difference between the amount of
pay allowances and subsistence allowances, is justified and the
order passed by the appellate authority does not call for any
I have considered submissions made by learned counsel for
the parties and have perused the material available on record.
A bare look at the charges levelled against the petitioner
reveals that charges No. 1 and 3 pertained to the absence of the
petitioner and charge No.2 pertained to the lodging of a criminal
case under Section 354/342 IPC against the petitioner. The inquiry
officer found charges No.1 and 3 proved against the petitioner and
charge No.2 on account of acquittal of the petitioner by the
criminal court was found not proved.
The disciplinary authority, discussed all the charges as well
as the material available including charge No.2, wherein the
petitioner was exonerated and, thereafter imposed punishment of
(4 of 5)
reversion as well as forfeiting the difference of amount between
the pay allowances and subsistence allowances. The appellate
authority by its order (Annex.-P/7) again dealt with all the three
issues in unison and after noticing that the petitioner had placed
material, wherein the leave for the period, for which, charges No.
1 and 3 were levelled against the petitioner had already been
sanctioned by the competent authority, noticed charge No.2 and
observed as under:-
“ysfdu vkjksih vf/kdkjh dks vius in dh xfjek ds vUrxZr
jktdk;Z fu’Bk ds lkFk lEikfnr fd;k tkuk pkfg;s FkkA”
The observations made by the appellate authority apparently
pertains to the charge No.2 as the said charge pertained to a
criminal case against the petitioner on charges inter alia under
Section 354 IPC. However, once the inquiry officer/disciplinary
authority had found the charge against the petitioner as not
proved, the said aspect or allegations as made in charge No.2
could not form the basis either for the disciplinary authority or for
the appellate authority to hold anything against the petitioner,
inasmuch as on the said finding, no disagreement was noticed
and/or the petitioner was called upon to reply on the said aspect.
Once the said finding of the inquiry officer was accepted even by
the disciplinary authority and no notice was issued to the
petitioner, the same could not be used either by the disciplinary
authority or the appellate authority to impose punishment on the
As noticed hereinbefore, once the charges No.1 and 3, which
pertained to the unauthorized absence and/or the petitioner not
(5 of 5)
reporting for duty despite notice, it was held that the leave for the
said period was sanctioned by the competent authority, there was
apparently no reason for imposing punishment on the petitioner
for the said charges.
In view thereof, once the appellate authority accepted the
appeal of the petitioner qua the charges No. 1 and 3, apparently
imposing of the punishment of censure based on the charge No.2
cannot be sustained and, therefore, the order passed by the
appellate authority dated 05.11.2015 (Annex.-P/7) imposing
punishment of censure deserves to be and is set aside.
Once the order of punishment of censure is set aside, the
petitioner on account of full exoneration automatically becomes
entitled to the grant of difference between the pay allowances
and subsistence allowance on reinstatement under Rule 54 of the
Rajasthan Service Rules, 1951 for the period of his suspension i.e.
from 26.10.2012 to 18.08.2014.
In view of the above discussion, the writ petition filed by the
petitioner is allowed. The order dated 05.11.2015 (Annex.-P/7) to
the extent it has imposed penalty of censure on the petitioner is
quashed and set aside. The petitioner would be entitled to all
consequential benefits including the difference between pay
allowances and subsistence allowances for the period 26.10.2012
The needful be done by the respondents within a period of