Singh & Ors Vs. State of Punjab & Anr  INSC 1046 (30 August 1996)
K. Ramaswamy, K.G.B. Pattanaik (J)
O R D
have heard learned counsel on both sides.
appeal by special leave arises from the judgment and order dated May 7, 1991 of the High Court of Punjab & Haryana at Chandigarh made in RSA No.2260/80. The
admitted facts are that three appellants along with 27 others had gone in a
procession, in spite of the prohibitory order, to represent, to the
Superintendent of Police at his residence, their grievance of inadequate
accommodation and other facilities not provided to them. That was done after
their duty was over in the evening. For the making of such representation and
for violating the prohibitory order, an enquiry was conducted against the three
appellants who had taken initiative and led the procession, making a charge
that they were guilty of grave misconduct under Rule 16  of the Punjab
Police Rules which is held to have been proved; resultantly, they were
dismissed from service. The order of dismissal was confirmed on appeal.
Thereafter, the appellants filed suit for declaration that the order of
dismissal was null and void and inoperative; the suit was decreed on April 7, 1979. On appeal, it was dismissed on February 20, 1980. In the second appeal, the High
Court reversed the decisions and dismissed the suit. Thus this appeal by
true that the appellants are disciplined members of the police force. The
grievance of inadequate accommodation provided to them is a legitimate
grievance to be represented to the officer for its redressal. No doubt,
prohibitory order was issued and there is violation thereof;
the appellants marched peacefully to make their representation. Under these
circumstances, it cannot be said that they have committed misconduct warranting
extreme penalty of dismissal from service. Accordingly, the order of the High
Court is set aside. However, the respondents are directed to impose penalty of
stoppage of one increment without cumulative effect.
appeal is accordingly allowed. The appellants are entitled to reinstatement
with all the consequential benefits. No costs.