Suresh Chandra Vs.
State of Uttranchal & Ors.  INSC 1110 (25 May 2009)
JURISDICTION CIVIL APPEAL NO. 5598 OF 2007 SURESH CHANDRA .......APPELLANT(S)
Versus WITH CIVIL APPEAL NO.4773 OF 2008
order will dispose of Civil Appeal No.5598/2007 filed by one Suresh Chandra and
also an Civil Appeal no.4773/2008 filed by respondent 8 Ravindra Prasad.
is an inter se dispute between these two officers who were working as engineers
in the State of Uttar Pradesh. While the appellant Suresh Chandra was a
directly recruited Assistant Engineer having been appointed on 2.2.1999, the
other person namely Ravindra Prasad was, however, appointed as a Junior Engineer
in the year 1983 on adhoc basis and was ultimately regularised in the year 1989
as Junior Engineer. Thereafter, he was promoted on 25.5.1995. However, the
question is whether this was an adhoc promotion or a substantive promotion.
While Shri Ravindra Prasad claims this to be a regular promotion since it was
granted after his selection by the Departmental Promotion Committee, the
appellant Suresh Chandra, however, claims that this was anadhoc promotion. Both
these officers were allocated to the State of Uttranchal as it then was (now
State of Uttrakhand). While Shri Suresh Chandra was allocated in his capacity
as Assistant Engineer, however, Ravindra Prasad was allocated in his capacity
as Junior Engineer because till then he continued to be in the seniority list
of Junior Engineers and was not included in the cadre of Assistant Engineer. Be
that as it may.
a question came as to in what capacity Ravindra Prasad can be accommodated in
the State of Uttranchal. There was lot of correspondence between the newly
created State of Uttranchal and Uttar Pradesh and as a result the State of
Uttar Pradesh then took up the matter, sent it to the U.P. Public Service
Commission which again went into the exercise of examining the records of Ravindra
Prasad and also interviewed him and ultimately wrote to the State of Uttranchal
that he was liable to be promoted and that he was properly promoted to the post
of Assistant Engineer from his post of Junior Engineer. This recommendation of
the U.P. Public Service Commission was also granted approval by the Hon'ble
Governor of Uttar Pradesh. It is on this basis that the State of Uttranchal in
the year 2006 directed Ravindra Prasad to grant the seniority in the post of
Assistant Engineer from 25.5.1995. This was challenged by Suresh Chandra. While
in another petition, Ravindra Prasad had also challenged exclusion of his name
from the list of Assistant Engineers. Both these petitions came to be decided
along with some other petitions by the High Court and the High Court dismissed
the petition filed by Suresh Chandra and thereby accepted the position that
Ravindra Prasad had to be held senior to Suresh Chandra he having been promoted
in the year 1995 and his promotion having been regularised and upheld by State
of Uttar Pradesh as well as the State of Uttranchal. While Shri Suresh Chandra
has challenged this order on various grounds, even Shri Ravindra Prasad has
challenged the order on account of an observation made in the said judgment to the
effect that Shri Ravindra Prasad was given an adhoc promotion to the post of
Sunil Gupta, learned senior counsel urged before us that the very basis of the
High Court order was incorrect inasmuch as the High Court went on to apply the
rules called Uttranchal (On posts within the purview of the Public Service
Commission) Adhoc Appointments Regularisation Rules, 2002. Indeed when we see
paragraph 3 of the impugned judgment it is found that those rules are relied
upon by the High Court. We have cursorily gone through those rules and are of
prima facie opinion that those rules may not apply for the simple reason that
the rules did not apply to promotees.
we are not at all satisfied with the judgment which is extremely sketchy and
skeleton like without answering number of issues which could be raised.
One of the issues
could be as to whether Uttar Pradesh Government and more particularly the U.P.
Public Service Commission could have had the jurisdiction to decide upon the
nature of promotion awarded to Shri Ravindra Prasad particularly after the
State was divided and after the State of Uttar Pradesh was divested of its
control over the employees. There are number of other issues arising and we
find that the judgment is totally silent about various facts as also the rules
including the 1954 Regulations as amended by 13th amendment and 16th amendment.
Therefore, the impugned judgment appears to be wanting in all the necessary
details and is liable to be set aside. We would expect the High Court to go
into all the questions raised by the parties in the light of the applicable
rules and give a clear cut finding as regards (i) the nature of promotion
granted to Shri Ravindra Prasad, (ii) the legality or propriety of the exercise
taken by the U.P. Public Service Commission as also the positions
(contradictory) taken by the State of Uttranchal in the matter. We, therefore,
request the High Court to dispose of the matter within six months of the writ
reaching that Court. Our no expression should be understood as expressing any
opinion on the merits of the matter.
this, the appeals are disposed of. No order as to costs.
V.S. SIRPURKAR )