The Delhi High Court today dismissed a former IAF pilot’s plea to quash an enquiry launched against him in 1992 by his erstwhile employer Vayudoot Ltd which had later merged into Indian Airlines.
A bench of justices Rajiv Sahai Endlaw and Indermeet Kaur dismissed the plea on grounds of lack of reasons for delay in filing the petition against the inquiry. ”
No cogent explanation, however, was given for the delay in filing the petition in as much as though the appellant (retired Wing Commander G S Bindra) admitted the inquiry proceedings till March 1993 only, the writ petition as aforesaid was filed in October 1997,” the bench said. Bindra, who served IAF as a pilot for 25 years with over 5,700 hours of flying experience, had joined Vayudoot Ltd in 1987 for flying small Dornier aircrafts, which used to provide feeder services to Indian Airlines to connect remote areas with main domestic routes.
The former IAF pilot alleged harassment by Vayudoot saying he was neither transferred to Delhi as promised nor allowed to fly Dornier aircraft. It was also submitted that he was suspended following initiation of the inquiry proceedings. Vayudoot merged into Indian Airlines in 1994 which, in turn, later got amalgamated with Air India.
The former IAF pilot, in his plea, had sought a direction to Air India that he be allowed to fly again and his suspension and subsequent enquiry against him be quashed. The single judge bench had dismissed Bindra’s plea on various grounds including the delay in filing the petition.
The court had also said the master servant relation between Bindra and M/s Vayudoot Ltd ceased after he joined another company in 1992 and subsequent withdrawal of resignation from Vayudoot in 1997 before filing the plea did not help his case either.
The division bench also concurred with the findings of the single-judge bench and rejected Bindra’s plea.