For the Appellants: K.L janjani, advocates
For the Respondents: B. V Balaram Das, advocates
The present civil appeal which has been heard over video conferencing is directed against the order dated on 5th May 2009 passed by a Divison bench of the high court of Bombay whereby appellants plea for quashing disciplinary proceedings and settings aside from a dismissal order on charges of corruption and extraconstitutional conduct while employed as a parliamentary officer was denied.
The appellant joined the central industrial security force in January 1995 as a sub-inspector after completing the required training in Hyderabad he was allocated to Mumbai Office of the western zone and posted at the local unit of Bharat petroleum corporation Ltd in March 1996. Although he was initially deputed to perform shift duty e July 1997 he was deployed in the crime and intelligence wing as proved by an officer order dated on 8th May 1998 at the appellant was specifically entrusted with conducting surprise searches of personnel and taking strict actions against anyone indulging in corruption.
On 28th February 1999 at around 6 pm constable ram avatar Sharma was commuting in CISF bus near the BPCL compound where inspector Hiralal Chaudhry noticed a large bundle of high denomination of notes in Sharma's pocket. Suspicious Chaudhry got the bus turned back towards the BPCL compound and forcibly made Sharma deboard near north gate amidst witness Chaudhry searched Sharma's person during with a total sum of L 10, 780 in the form of 100 notes of L 100 and the rest in the smaller denomination was recovered no explanation for the large sum of unaccounted cash was forthcoming from Sharma except for thee plea for mercy post which the amount was grabbed. and the incident recorded in the general diary kept at North gate of the BPCL compound.
Further, it was found that at conflicting GD entry had been made at the main gate of BPCL compound a little earlier at around 6:05 pm noting how an amount of L 9000 had been handed over by dog handler constable KK Sharma on behalf of another official as a personal loan to Sharma it was found that throughout the investigation that this entry was false and had been registered at the instance of the present appellant who made many phone calls between 6:30 and 7:00 pm to ASI Surjan Singh who was present at the main gate and was in charge of other GD register.
The next morning KK Sharma who was projected to have delivered the cash to Sharma was pressurized by the appellant to falsely support his alternate loan theory by deposing that he delivered the impounded sum of money
An FIR was thus registered by the respondent authorities with the regional anti-corruption branch of the Central Bureau of investigation on 6th March 1999 under various provisions of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 and the prevention of the corruption Act 1988 along with it an enquiry under rule 34 of CISF Rules, 1969 with assistant commandant PB Patil as the enquiry officer was also started and the appellant was also placed under suspension.
The charge sheet contained three charges against the appellant first gross misconduct and in the discipline by ordering false GD entry second is becoming an extra-constitutional authority b issuing unlawful orders to constable KK Sharma to give a false statement to substantiate. all the charges were contested by the appellant who sought and was given a detailed list of proofs and documents.
The enquiry officer submitted a self-seeking a report on 17th September 99 which contained written statements and deposition of six victims who were substantiating the charges as well as proof led by the appellant in the form of five defence witnesses.
Then the enquiry officer examined Ram avatar Sharma who testified at around 2 pm on 28th February 1999.
Based on the numerous evidence and after according the appellant an opportunity to cross-examine all the witnesses as well as leading his native arguments the enquiry officer through report dated on 17th September 1999 held the appellant guilty under each of the charges. At last upon a holistic interpretation of all the proofs that is an and action of GD threatening Of KK Sharma as well as an indication of wrongdoings from the statement of other witnesses
Adding the guidelines to the facts of the case in hand it is clear that the punishment of dismissal from service is far from disproportionate to the charges of corruption, fabrication and intimidation which has been proved against the appellant.
Further, the appellant's actions would most probably have caused huge consequences losses to BPCL and deemed the reputation of CISF amongst the members of the public unofficial group of nature of the appellants force a sense of integrity, commitment, discipline. The expectation is only heightened in the case of the appellant given how he was specifically tasked with weeding out corruption and surprise raids.
The light of the above discussion is accordingly dismissed.