Terming the dismissal of a CRPF constable for indulging in a drunken brawl in a market as not disproportionate, the Supreme Court today said a member of a disciplined force is expected to follow rules and “not allow his feelings to fly in fancy”.
The observation came as the apex court allowed an appeal filed by the Centre against a High Court verdict upholding a trial court order directing reinstatement of a Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) constable in service along with arrears of pay and allowances and other consequential benefits.
CRPF constable Diler Singh was dismissed from service after a departmental enquiry held that on June 22, 2001 he had left the campus in Narnaul in Haryana without permission, went to the market, consumed liquor and quarrelled with some civilians.
“We are inclined to think that as a member of the disciplined force, the respondent was expected to follow the rules, have control over his mind and passion, guard his instincts and feelings and not allow his feelings to fly in fancy. It is not a mild deviation which human nature would grant some kind of lenience.
“It is a conduct in public which has compelled the authority to think and, rightly so, that the behaviour is totally indisciplined. The respondent (constable), if we allow ourselves to say so, has given indecent burial to self- control, diligence and strength of will-power,” a bench comprising Justices Dipak Misra and N V Ramana said.
The apex court further said that as a member of a disciplined force like CRPF, such behavior was not expected of him and in the circumstances, the punishment of dismissal cannot be termed “disproportionate”.
“The respondent (Singh) was a part of the disciplined force. He has left the campus without prior permission, proceeded to the market, consumed liquor and quarrelled with the civilians. It has been established that he had consumed liquor at the market place, and it has been also proven that he has picked up quarrel with the civilians. It is not expected of a member of the disciplined force to behave in this manner.
“When a member of the disciplined force deviates to such an extent from discipline and behaves in an untoward manner which is not conceived of, it is difficult to hold that the punishment of dismissal as has been imposed is disproportionate and shocking to the judicial conscience,” the court said.
( Source – PTI )