State of Haryana & Ors.  INSC 1380 (4 August 2009)
REPORTABLE IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CIVIL
APPEAL NO. 5076 OF 2009 [Arising out of SLP) No.13023 of 2008] Rampal
----Appellant Versus State of Haryana & Ors. ----Respondents
This appeal is directed against the judgment and order dated 30th
of April, 2008 passed by a Division Bench of the High Court of Punjab and
Haryana at Chandigarh in CWP No.4215 of 2007.
The appellant, at the relevant point of time, was working as a
Constable but he got entry in service by producing a caste certificate showing
him as a scheduled caste candidate. It appears that one 2 complaint was made
against him that he got the said certificate wrongly, by showing himself as
belonging to `Sirkiband' caste whereas in fact he belongs to `Banjara' caste,
which cannot be said to be a "Scheduled Caste". On enquiry by the
Tehsildar, this certificate of the appellant was cancelled. It was the
grievance of the appellant that before cancelling the certificate, no
opportunity of hearing was granted to him and accordingly, the order of
cancellation must be set aside.
Challenging the order of cancellation, a writ application was
moved by the appellant before the High Court, which, by the impugned order was
Feeling aggrieved, the appellant filed this special leave
petition, which on grant of leave was heard in presence of the learned counsel
for the parties.
We have heard the learned counsel for the parties and examined the
impugned order and other materials on record. In our view, the appeal is liable
to be allowed and the impugned order should also be set aside on a 3 very short
point. It is an admitted position that before cancellation of the caste
certificate of the appellant, the authorities ought to have given an
opportunity of hearing to the appellant and also to contend that the
Certificate issued to him was a "Scheduled Caste Certificate" and,
therefore, it cannot be quashed. In view of the fact that the principles of
natural justice was admittedly violated in this case, the impugned order must
be set aside and the concerned Tehsildar must be directed to decide the dispute
regarding the caste certificate of the appellant after giving hearing to the
parties and after passing a reasoned order, preferably within three months from
the date of supply of a copy of this order to him.
The impugned order is set aside. The appeal is thus allowed to the
extent indicated above. There will be no order as to costs.
..................................J. [Tarun Chatterjee]