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Allahabad High Court
Anil Kumar Chaudhary vs Collector/District Election … on 11 September, 2000
Equivalent citations: 2000 (4) AWC 3092, (2001) 1 UPLBEC 204
Author: A Yog
Bench: A Yog


JUDGMENT

A.K. Yog, J.

1. Supplementary affidavit filed today be taken on record and para 10 as contained in the writ petition shall be ignored ; in its place para 10 as quoted in Para 4 of the supplementary affidavit be read.

2. This petition has been filed by Anil Kumar Chaudhary, who was appointed as Tax Superintendent by the Chairman, Zila Panchayat, Siddharthnagar and at the relevant time, his services were requisitioned by the District Magistrate/District Election Officer (Panchayat), Siddharthnagar, for the purpose of getting Panchayat Elections held under the supervision of the District Election Officer. Impugned order of suspension dated June 13, 2000 (Annexure-1 to the writ petition] has been issued in compliance with the direction issued by Election Commission dated June 13, 2000 (as mentioned in the impugned order itself – Annexure-1 to the writ petition).

3. Petitioner has come up before this Court by means of the present petition and seeks to invoke jurisdiction under Article 226, Constitution of India on the ground that impugned order has been passed by an authority which is not competent at all to suspend the petitioner inasmuch as petitioner is

an employee of Zila Panchayat and respondent No. 1 has no concern with the same as such (Para 12 of the petition).

4. Vide order dated September 7, 2000 (on the order-sheet), learned Standing counsel was granted time to file counter-affidavit as a last opportunity. Since, learned standing counsel has failed to file counter-affidavit in spite of opportunity given earlier by the Court. I heard learned counsels for the parties.

5. Learned counsel for the petitioner in support of his contention raised in the petition relying upon the decision of the case of Lal Jeet Ram v. Sachiv/Ayukt Rajya, Niruachan Ayog, rendered in Writ Petition No. 28590 of 2000 decided on July 12, 2000. In this case, petitioner Lal Jeet Ram had impugned order of suspension during elections on the ground that District Election Officer District Magistrate had no disciplinary control over those persons who were requisitioned for election purposes. Referring to various provisions of U. P. Panchayatrat Act, 1947, particularly Section 12(bb) of the Act, the Court held that ‘expression superintendence, direction and control of the election conferred on the Chief State Election Officer, Panchayat to supervise and perform ail functions to conduct election selection of these offices did not vest him and to place a person under suspension. The learned single Judge held that order of suspension suffered from lack of jurisdiction and could not be sustained.

6. In another case, Shambhoo Singh v. State Election Officer and others. Writ Petition No. 29629 of 2000, decided by a Division Bench of this Court, it is held that once election result is declared, the State Election Officer or the District Election Officer have no jurisdiction in the matter and the only remedy for a person aggrieved is to challenge the election result by filing a petition before competent forum/Court. In view of the decision of the Division Bench in the case of Shambhoo Singh (supra). It is abundantly clear that

once the result is declared, the District Magistrate is functus officio and also that a person engaged for assisting in election process like the present petitioner cannot continue to be under administrative or otherwise control of the District Election Officer.

7. Perusal of the impugned suspension order (Annexure-1 to the writ petition) shows that Election Commission has taken cognisance of certain facts, which, according to its opinion, constitute charges as contained in the said impugned order. All these charges, however, relate to the working of the petitioner in connection with election process. In view of the ratio laid down by this Court, the option for an aggrieved authority person is to get cancelled the election result by filing an election petition. On the other hand, if some person has misconducted himself as alleged in the impugned order of suspension, then the only course will be to bring those facts to the notice of the appointing authority having disciplinary control over the petitioner.

8. In view of the above discussion, the impugned order of suspension dated June 13, 2000 (Annexure-1 to the writ petition) cannot be sustained and it is, accordingly, quashed. It is, however, made clear that action against the petitioner can be taken only in accordance with law by an authority having competence and jurisdiction under law and it shall be open for the said authority take cognizance, if it is so advised.

9. Writ petition stands allowed.

10. No costs.


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