Shankar Mohapatra & Ors. Vs. State of Orissa & Ors.  INSC 1728
(12 November 2009)
SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CIVIL APPEAL NOS.7537-7541
OF 2009 (Arising out of SLP (C) Nos.13237-13241 of 2008 Shiba Shankar Mohapatra
& Ors. ... Appellants State of Orissa & Ors. ... Respondents
Leave granted in all the matters.
These appeals have been preferred against the judgment and order
dated 7.2.2008 passed in writ petition nos.426, 1233, 2878, 3424 and 5637 of
2006 by the High Court of Orissa at Cuttack by which the High Court has partly
allowed all the writ petitions quashing certain directions issued by the Orissa
Administrative Tribunal (hereinafter called the `Tribunal'), however, directed
to reconsider the case of promotion of Sub-Inspectors (General) (hereinafter
called `SIs (g)') to the post of Inspectors, in case it is found that 2 the SIs
(g) had been placed below the Sub-Inspectors (Steno) (hereinafter called SIs
(St), they should be granted promotion from the date their counterparts in the
other wing had been promoted, in case, they fulfilled minimum eligibility
criteria for promotion at the time of consideration of their respective
juniors. Such an exercise was directed to be completed within a period of six
months. However, the writ petitions have been allowed to the extent that the
direction issued by the Tribunal to prepare the gradation list of SIs (St) and
SIs(g) in accordance with the dates of passing out of the Sub-Inspector
training course, has been quashed.
The facts and circumstances giving rise to these appeals are that
most of the officers appellants/respondents involved in all these five appeals,
had been appointed in 1972-73 onwards as SIs (g) and SIs (St). The eligibility
for appointment had been different for both the wings. An additional
qualification of stenography was required for the post of SI (St). After
selection, candidates who were appointed as SIs (St) were given direct
appointment and after five years, thereof, they were sent for training and
after successful completion of training, they could become SIS (g) and could be
considered for further promotion as Inspectors. So far as the SIs (g) were
concerned after their selection they were sent for training in Police 3
Training College and after completion thereof, they were appointed on probation
for 2 years. Most of the officers belonging to both groups had been promoted as
Inspectors, Deputy Superintendent of Police and Superintendent of Police and by
now retired after attaining the age of superannuation. There are claims and
counter-claims regarding issuance of their inter-se seniority lists in 1979,
and in the year 1992. However, it remains undisputed that after considering the
objections received by the Department, a final inter-se seniority list was
issued in 1997 and again in 1999. One SI (g) Parsuram Sahu, appointed in 1968
filed representation before the State Govt. to fix his seniority over and above
two officers belonging to the group of SIs (St) and as no order was passed he
approached the Tribunal by filing OA No.316/2000 - Parsuram Sahu v. Principal
Secretary, Home Department, Govt. of Orissa & Ors. with a prayer for
direction to recast the gradation list published in June 1997 and to place him
over and above the respondent nos.4 and 5 therein. The said application was
allowed by the Tribunal vide judgment and order dated 27.4.2005 (Annexure-P/4)
with a direction to consider the representation of Shri Parsuram Sahu keeping
in mind the letter issued by the Home Department dated 3.2.1987 according to
which, the seniority of the SIs (St) would be determined after their entry into
General wing after passing the Training 4 Course. The other O.A. No.23/2000 -
Sudhir Chandra Ray v. State of Orissa & Ors. was decided vide judgment and
order dated 8.12.2005 placing reliance upon the judgment in Parsuram Sahu's
case and similar direction was issued. Same remained the fate of OA No.203/2001
- Sushanta Kumar Biswal & Ors. v. State of Orissa & Ors. filed by
officers appointed in 1993 as SIs (g) as the said Application was also disposed
of by the Tribunal relying upon its earlier judgments in Parsuram Sahu and
Sudhir Chandra Ray's cases. Being aggrieved, Writ Petition No.624 of 2006 was
filed by SIs (St) in the High Court challenging the judgment and order in OA
No.203 of 2001, and four other writ petitions against the judgment and order in
OA No.23 of 2000. All the said petitions have been disposed of by the High
Court by a common judgment and order impugned herein. Hence, these appeals.
Shri P.P. Rao, Ld. Senior Counsel appearing for the appellants has
submitted that there could be no justification for the Tribunal/High Court to
place reliance upon the letters, one written by the Home Department dated
3.2.1987 and the other by Ministry of Law dated 14.2.1990 as the said letters
were merely an opinion of the Departments and could not be treated as being
Executive instructions. In fact, no executive instruction had ever been issued
5 taking into consideration the said letters. In absence of any statutory rules
for determining their inter-se seniority, the general principle of
determination of seniority i.e. to reckon the period from the initial
appointment i.e. continuous period/length of service should have been taken
into consideration. The long standing practice followed by the State
Authorities that SIs (St) would rank senior to SIs(g) could not be disturbed at
such a belated stage, as it had been given effect to all throughout this
period. More so, as the first part of the order passed by the Tribunal, namely,
to prepare the gradation list of SIs (St) and SIs(g) in accordance with the
dates of passing the course from the training college, has been set aside by
the High Court and has not been challenged by anybody, has attained finality
and therefore, the direction given against the present appellants regarding the
eligibility qua the seniority is liable to be quashed. The High Court erred in
not taking note of distinction between eligibility for promotion and seniority.
the two Original Applications have been decided by the Tribunal merely by
placing reliance upon its earlier judgment in Parsuram Sahu (supra) which could
not have been entertained at such a belated stage.
the appeals deserve to be allowed.
On the contrary, Shri L.N. Rao, Ld. Senior Counsel appearing for
the SIs (St) has submitted that the High Court has issued direction only to
give effect to the statutory rules, particularly, Rule 650 of the Orissa Police
Manual Rules (hereinafter called `the Rules') which provides that eligibility
of Sub-Inspectors for promotion to the rank of Inspectors have to be determined
as per Rule 650(a)(ii) which provides for minimum 10 years continuous service
after passing of the training course. SIs(St) are appointed in terms of Rule
683 read with annexure 42 to the Rules. Nature of job of SIs(St) is entirely
different from the duties of SIs(g). The SIs(St) basically perform Secretarial
duties; SIs(St) are required to go through the training course and then
appointed on probation as SIs(g). Rules also require confirmation as SIs(g).
Thus, it cannot be termed as in continuation of their previous appointment as
SIs(St). Period of service rendered as SI(s) can be treated only as a
qualifying service and cannot be counted for the purpose of seniority.
Therefore, no fault can be found with the impugned judgment. The appeals are
liable to be dismissed.
Shri Radhey Shyam Jena, Ld. Counsel appearing for the State has
fairly conceded that the rules for determining the inter-se seniority have not
yet been framed. Earlier SIs(St) had been treated senior to SIs(g) for a long 7
period but after receiving the opinion from the Ministry of Law, such a
practice has been abandoned. What the Tribunal and the High Court have taken
into consideration were merely opinions of the Government Departments and not
the executive instructions. The cases require to be decided in correct
We have considered the rival submissions canvassed on behalf of
the parties and perused the record. The basic judgment involved herein is, in
the case of Parsuram Sahu by the Tribunal and it may be pertinent to mention
here that the said judgment had not been challenged by any person either before
the High Court or before this Court and thus attained finality.
it becomes necessary for this Court to examine the correctness of that judgment
and effect thereof, as the other judgments have been delivered by the Tribunal
merely by placing reliance upon it. The admitted facts involved therein reveal
that one Pursuram Sahu SI (g) joined the Police Services in 1968. He was
promoted to the rank of Inspector in 1986 and to the rank of D.S.P. in 1998. In
his O.A. before the Tribunal, he impleaded only two private persons, namely,
Shri Bijaya Brata Kundu and Shri Paresh Ch. Mohanty who had been working as
Superintendents of Police in the year 2000. The said private respondents had
been appointed as SIs (St) on 8 25.1.1966 and 23.2.1966 respectively. The said
respondents did not enter appearance nor contested the case. Therefore,
questions do arise as to whether in absence of any statutory rule for
determining their seniority as SIs, the Tribunal could disturb the
uninterrupted practice in the State to place SI(St) above SI(g) while preparing
their inter se seniority and whether the application could be entertained by
the Tribunal at such a belated stage, particularly, when promotions of the
respondents therein to the posts of Inspector, D.S.P. or Superintendent of
Police had never been challenged.
The question of application of the doctrine of contemporanea
expositio has been considered by this Court taking into account the factual
& Anr. AIR 1981 SC 1922, this Court applied the rule of contemporaneous
exposition as the Court found it a well established rule of interpretation of a
statute by reference to the exposition it has received from contemporary
authority. However, the Court added the words of caution that such a rule must
give way where the language of the statute is plain and unambiguous.
M/s. Parle Export (P) Ltd., AIR 1989 SC 644, this Court observed
that the words used in the provision should be understood in the same way in
which they have been understood in ordinary parlance in the area in which the
law is in force or by the people who ordinarily deal with them. In Indian
Metals Bhubaneshwar, AIR 1991 SC 1028, the Court has applied the same rule of
interpretation by holding that contemporaneous exposition by the administrative
authority is a very useful and relevant guide to the interpretation of the
expression used in a statutory instrument.
267, this Court observed that construction in consonance with long- standing
practice prevailing in the concerned department is to be preferred.
Ltd. AIR 1979 SC 1049; and State of Tamil Nadu vs. Mohi Traders, AIR 1989 SC
1167, this Court observed that the principle of contemporaneous expositio, i.e.
interpreting a document by reference to the 1 exposition it has received from
Competent Authority can be invoked though the same will not always be decisive
of the question of construction. The administrative construction, i.e. the
contemporaneous construction placed by administrative or executive officers
responsible for execution of the Act/Rules etc. generally should be clearly
wrong before it is over-turned.
Such a construction commonly referred to as practical construction
although not controlling, is nevertheless entitled to considerable weight and
is highly persuasive. However, it may be disregarded for cogent reasons.
The executive interpretation placed by those who are charged with
executing the statute, though not binding, is nevertheless entitled to
considerable weight as highly persuasive. However, the application of the
doctrine in respect of modern Statutes has been doubted by this Court (vide
M/s. Punjab Traders vs. State of Punjab and Ors. AIR 1990 SC 2300 and M/s.
Oswal Agro Mills Ltd. vs. Collector of Central Excise AIR 1993 SC 2288.
In view of the above, one may reach the conclusion that
administrative interpretation may provide the guidelines for interpreting the
Rule or executive instruction and may be accepted unless it is found in 1
violation of the Rules itself. The Court may not be bound to accept the
mistaken construction of the statutes by those who had been dealing with the
working of the Statute.
instant Appeals, this fact has been mentioned at several places by the present
appellants but has not been considered either by the Tribunal or by the High
Court. Shri Jena, Ld. Counsel for the State has denied the facts submitting
that after receiving the opinion of the Law Ministry as well as of the Home
Ministry, the practice was changed. In absence of any finding of fact recorded
by either of the Courts below, it is not safe to give due weight age to this
doctrine in the facts and circumstances of the case.
More so, the judgment of the Tribunal treating opinion of the Law
Ministry and Home Department as statutory rules/Executive instructions is not
worth acceptance. In Sant Ram v. State of Rajasthan AIR 1967 SC 1910, a
Constitution Bench of this Court has held that statutory rules cannot be
amended by Executive instructions but "if the rules are silent" on
any particular point, Government can fill up the gaps by issuing executive
instructions, in conformity with the existing rules. Similar view has been reiterated
in Union of India v. H.R. Patankar & Ors. AIR 1984 SC 1587.
However, mere opinion given by various departments of the Government cannot be
termed as Executive instructions.
One must not lose sight that seniority and eligibility for promotion
are two different concepts altogether. Explaining the difference between the
two, this Court in R. Prabha Devi & Ors. vs. Government of India & Ors.
AIR 1988 SC 902 held as under :- "15. The rule-making authority is
competent to frame rules laying down eligibility condition for promotion to a
higher post. When such an eligibility condition has been laid down by service
rules, it cannot be said that a direct recruit who is senior to the promotees
is not required to comply with the eligibility condition and he is entitled to
be considered for promotion to the higher post merely on the basis of his
seniority......When qualifications for appointment to a post in a particular
cadre are prescribed, the same have to be satisfied before a person can be
considered for appointment. Seniority in a particular cadre does not entitle a
public servant for promotion to a higher post unless he fulfills the
eligibility condition prescribed by the relevant rules. A person must be
eligible for promotion having regard to the qualifications prescribed for the
post before he can be considered for promotion. Seniority will be relevant only
amongst persons eligible. Seniority cannot be substituted for eligibility nor
it can override it in the matter of promotion to the next higher post.
certain length of service in a particular cadre can validly be prescribed and
is so prescribed, unless a person possesses that qualification, he cannot be
considered eligible for appointment. There is no law which lays down that a
senior in service would automatically be eligible for promotion.
by itself does not outweigh experience."
Thus, in view of the above we are of the opinion that in absence
of any statutory rules, the executive instructions for fixing the inter se seniority
of two wings of the Sub-Inspectors could have been issued by the State
Government. Admittedly, no such executive instruction has ever been issued. The
letters issued by the Government Departments, being merely opinion of the
Departments could not be conferred status of the executive instructions.
The question of entertaining the petition disputing the long
standing seniority filed at a belated stage is no more res integra. A
Constitution Bench of this Court, in Ramchandra Shanker Deodhar & Ors. v.
State of Maharashtra & Ors. AIR 1974 SC 259, considered the effect of delay
in challenging the promotion and seniority list and held that any claim for
seniority at a belated stage should be rejected inasmuch as it seeks to disturb
the vested rights of other persons regarding seniority, rank and promotion
which have accrued to them during the intervening period. A party should
approach the Court just after accrual of the cause of complaint. While deciding
the said case, this Court placed reliance upon its earlier judgments,
particularly in Tilokchand Motichand v. H.B. Munshi, AIR 1970 SC 898, wherein
it has been observed that the principle, on which the Court proceeds 1 in
refusing relief to the petitioner on the ground of laches or delay, is that the
rights, which have accrued to others by reason of delay in filing the writ
petition should not be allowed to be disturbed unless there is a reasonable
explanation for delay. The Court further observed as under:- "A party
claiming fundamental rights must move the Court before others' rights come out
into existence. The action of the Courts cannot harm innocent parties if their
rights emerge by reason of delay on the part of person moving the court."
This Court also placed reliance upon its earlier judgment of the
Constitution Bench in R.N. Bose v. Union of India & Ors. AIR 1970 SC 470,
wherein it has been observed as under:- "It would be unjust to deprive the
respondents of the rights which have accrued to them. Each person ought to be
entitled to sit back and consider that his appointment and promotion effected a
long time ago would not be defeated after the number of years."
In R.S. Makashi v. I.M. Menon & Ors. AIR 1982 SC 101, this
Court considered all aspects of limitation, delay and laches in filing the writ
petition in respect of inter se seniority of the employees. The Court referred
to its earlier judgment in State of Madhya Pradesh & Anr. v. Bhailal Bhai
etc. etc., AIR 1964 SC 1006, wherein it has been observed that the maximum
period fixed by the Legislature as the time within which the relief 1 by a suit
in a Civil Court must be brought, may ordinarily be taken to be a reasonable
standard by which delay in seeking the remedy under Article 226 of the
Constitution can be measured. The Court observed as under:- "We must
administer justice in accordance with law and principle of equity, justice and
good conscience. It would be unjust to deprive the respondents of the rights
which have accrued to them. Each person ought to be entitled to sit back and
consider that his appointment and promotion effected a long time ago would not
be set-aside after the lapse of a number of years..... The petitioners have not
furnished any valid explanation whatever for the inordinate delay on their part
in approaching the Court with the challenge against the seniority principles
laid down in the Government Resolution of 1968... We would accordingly hold
that the challenge raised by the petitioners against the seniority principles
laid down in the Government Resolution of March 2, 1968 ought to have been
rejected by the High Court on the ground of delay and laches and the writ
petition, in so far as it related to the prayer for quashing the said
Government resolution, should have been dismissed." (Emphasis added)
The issue of challenging the seniority list, which continued to be
in existence for a long time, was again considered by this Court in K.R. Mudgal
& Ors. v. R.P. Singh & Ors. AIR 1986 SC 2086. The Court held as under:-
"A government servant who is appointed to any post ordinarily should at
least after a period of 3-4 years of his appointment be allowed to attend to
the duties attached to his post peacefully and without any sense of
service conditions postulate that there shall be no sense of uncertainty
amongst the Government servants created 1 by writ petitions filed after several
years as in this case. It is essential that any one who feels aggrieved by the
seniority assigned to him, should approach the Court as early as possible
otherwise in addition to creation of sense of insecurity in the mind of
Government servants, there shall also be administrative complication and
difficulties.... In these circumstances we consider that the High Court was
wrong in rejecting the preliminary objection raised on behalf of the
respondents to the writ petition on the ground of laches."
While deciding the case, this Court placed reliance upon its
earlier judgment in Malcom Lawrance Cecil D'Souza v. Union of India & Ors. AIR
1975 SC 1269, wherein it had been observed as under:- "Although security
of service cannot be used as a shield against the administrative action for
lapse of a public servant, by and large one of the essential requirement of
contentment and efficiency in public service is a feeling of security. It is
difficult no doubt to guarantee such security in all its varied aspects, it
should at least be possible to ensure that matters like one's position in a
seniority list after having been settled for once should not be liable to be
re-opened after lapse of many years in the instance of a party who has itself
intervening party chosen to keep quiet. Raking up old matters like seniority
after a long time is likely to resort in administrative complications and difficulties.
It would, therefore, appear to be in the interest of smoothness and efficiency
of service that such matters should be given a quietus after lapse of some
In B.S. Bajwa v. State of Punjab & Ors. AIR 1999 SC 1510, this
Court while deciding the similar issue re-iterated the same view, observing as
under:- "It is well settled that in service matters, the question of
seniority should not be re-opened in such situations after the lapse of
reasonable period because that results in disturbing the settled position which
is not justifiable. There was inordinate delay in the present case for making
such a grievance. This along was sufficient to decline interference under
Article 226 and to reject the writ petition". (Emphasis added)
In Dayaram Asanand v. State of Maharashtra & Ors. AIR 1984 SC
850, while re-iterating the similar view this Court held that in absence of
satisfactory explanation for inordinate delay of 8-9 years in questioning under
Article 226 of the Constitution, the validity of the seniority and promotion
assigned to other employee could not be entertained.
In P.S. Sadasivaswamy v. State of Tamil Nadu AIR 1975 SC 2271,
this Court considered the case where the petition was filed after lapse of 14
years challenging the promotion. However, this Court held that aggrieved person
must approach the Court expeditiously for relief and it is not permissible to
put forward stale claim. The Court observed as under :- 1 "A person
aggrieved by an order promoting a junior over his head should approach the
Court at least within 6 months or at the most a year of such promotion."
The Court further observed that it was not that there was any
period of limitation for the Courts to exercise their powers under Article 226
nor was it that there could never be a case where the Courts cannot interfere
in a matter after certain length of time. It would be a sound and wise exercise
of jurisdiction for the Courts to refuse to exercise their extra ordinary
powers under Article 226 in the case of persons who do not approach it
expeditiously for relief and who standby and allow things to happen and then
approach the Court to put forward stale claim and try to unsettle settled
A similar view has been re-iterated by this Court in Smt. Sudama
Devi vs. Commissioner & Ors. (1983) 2 SCC 1; State of U.P. vs. Raj Bahadur
Singh & Anr. (1998) 8 SCC 685; and Northern Indian Glass Industries vs.
Jaswant Singh & Ors. (2003) 1 SCC 335.
In Dinkar Anna Patil & Anr. vs. State of Maharashtra, AIR 1999
SC 152, this Court held that delay and laches in challenging the seniority is 1
always fatal, but in case the party satisfies the Court regarding delay, the
case may be considered.
In K.A. Abdul Majeed vs. State of Kerala & Ors. (2001) 6 SCC
292, this Court held that seniority assigned to any employee could not be
challenged after a lapse of seven years on the ground that his initial
appointment had been irregular, though even on merit it was found that
seniority of the petitioner therein had correctly been fixed.
It is settled law that fence-sitters cannot be allowed to raise
the dispute or challenge the validity of the order after its conclusion. No
party can claim the relief as a matter of right as one of the grounds for refusing
relief is that the person approaching the Court is guilty of delay and the
laches. The Court exercising public law jurisdiction does not encourage
agitation of stale claims where the right of third parties crystallises in the
interregnum. (vide Aflatoon & Ors. vs. Lt. Governor, Delhi & Ors. AIR
1974 SC 2077; State of Mysore vs. V.K. Kangan & Ors., AIR 1975 SC 2190;
Municipal Council, Ahmednagar & Anr. vs Shah Hyder Beig & Ors., AIR
2000 SC 671; Inder Jit Gupta vs. Union of India & Ors. (2001) 6 SCC 637;
Shiv Dass vs. Union of India & Ors., AIR 2007 SC 1330; Regional Manager, 2
A.P.SRTC vs. N. Satyanarayana & Ors. (2008) 1 SCC 210; and City and
Industrial Development Corporation vs. Dosu Aardeshir Bhiwandiwala & Ors.
(2009) 1 SCC 168).
Thus, in view of the above, the settled legal proposition that
emerges is that once the seniority had been fixed and it remains in existence
for a reasonable period, any challenge to the same should not be entertained.
In K.R. Mudgal (supra), this Court has laid down, in crystal clear words that a
seniority list which remains in existence for 3 to 4 years unchallenged, should
not be disturbed. Thus, 3-4 years is a reasonable period for challenging the
seniority and in case someone agitates the issue of seniority beyond this
period, he has to explain the delay and laches in approaching the adjudicatory
forum, by furnishing satisfactory explanation.
The Tribunal ought to have dismissed the case of Parsuram Sahu
(supra) only on the ground of delay and the laches, as the applicant approached
the Tribunal at the verge of his retirement and after getting two promotions
while the other parties have got three promotions. In the said case, the
private respondents have not considered it proper to contest the case because both
of them were likely to superannuate just thereafter on 2 attaining the age of
retirement. Undoubtedly, the said judgment and order has not been challenged by
anybody and it attained finality but that remained the judgment in personem.
More so, there is nothing on record to show as to whether the said applicant
Parsuram Sahu could ever get any relief from the State Government. The O.A.
filed by Shri Sudhir Chandra Ray, had similar facts as in Pursuram Sahu's case.
While deciding the said application the Tribunal itself had taken note of the
facts that promotions had been made 8-9 years ago prior to issuance of the
combined gradation list in 1999. It is evident from the impugned judgment that
Shri Sudhir Chandra Ray joined as SI(g) on 4.1.1973. He was promoted to the
rank of Inspector with effect from 12.3.1991. We are of the considered opinion
that the said application ought to have been rejected by the Tribunal only on
the ground of delay and laches. The High Court has also not dealt with this
issue, however, it goes to the root of the cause. Such an inordinate delay
cannot be ignored particularly when the issue of delay has been pressed in
service before this Court.
The appellants have specifically pleaded that a seniority list was
issued in 1979. Subsequently, another seniority list was issued in 1992. A
tentative seniority list was circulated in 1996, and after considering the 2
objections by the State Authorities, a final seniority list was issued in June
1997. Again the seniority list was circulated in 1999. Though there had been
dispute regarding issuance of the said seniority lists, however, the High Court
in its judgment has taken note of the seniority list of 1979.
of gradation list in June 1997 cannot be disputed/doubted for the simple reason
that in Pursuram Sahu's case only this gradation list was under challenge. The
applicants in OA No.203 of 2001 claimed to have been appointed in 1993. Their
names should have definitely been included in the final gradation list
circulated in June 1997. However, there is no explanation by them as to how it
could not be challenged before the Tribunal and under what circumstances the
gradation list issued in 1999 was challenged in 2001. At the cost of
repetition, it is stated that, if the seniority list is to be challenged within
3-4 years of its issuance, we fail to understand as to why even OA No.203/2001
could not be dismissed on the ground of delay and laches, without entering into
the merits of the case.
The issue before the High Court was regarding the principle of
seniority for preparation of a combined gradation list of SIs (St) and SIs(g).
the High Court failed to decide the said issue rather directed preparation of a
combined list in conformity with eligibility criterion.
The other original application filed in Sudhir Chandra Ray's case
was liable to be dismissed only on the ground of delay and laches and we
dismiss the same. The High Court has set aside the direction issued by the
Tribunal directing the State Authorities to prepare the gradation list of
SI(St) and SI(g) in accordance with the dates of passing out of the
Sub-Inspector training course. This part of the order has not been challenged
by anybody and thus, this part of the order has attained finality, therefore,
the said part of the order does not require any interference in either of these
appeals. So far as the appeals arising out of writ petition nos.1233/06, 2878/06,
3424/06 and 5637/06 are concerned, stand allowed to that extent and the
remaining part of the direction contained in paragraph 9 of the judgment stand
So far as the appeal arising out of writ petition no.426/06 which
has arisen from the judgment and order of the Tribunal in OA No.203/2001 is
concerned, the relevant facts thereof, have not been taken into consideration
either by the Tribunal or by the High Court and the matter has been decided
making reference to the facts of other connected cases. Thus, in view of the
above, we set aside the judgment and order of the High Court in Writ Petition
No.426/06 only to the extent of the last part of the order, namely, "if 2
it is found that promotion of a Sub-Inspector was not considered before consideration
of Sub-Inspector placed below him in the seniority list, his promotion shall be
considered with effect from the date of promotion of his junior in case he had
fulfilled minimum eligibility criteria for promotion at the time of
consideration of his junior". The first part of the order contained in
paragraph 9 as already explained hereinabove has attained finality, thus, does
not require any interference. The High Court is requested to decide the case to
that extent only taking into consideration the law as explained hereinabove
including the issue of delay and the facts involved in that case expeditiously.
The appeals stand disposed of accordingly. No cost.
..................................J. (TARUN CHATTERJEE)