The Bombay High Court, in Gokul Rajaramji Ingle vs. Union of India, has rejected the challenge against vires of Article 81 [B] of the Education Code for Kendriya Vidyalaya. Upholding the order of Central Administrative Tribunal, the Division Bench comprising of Justices V.K. Jhadav and S.S. Shinde also dismissed a petition challenging order of termination of the services of a teacher accused of sexual harassment.
The contention of the petitioner was that Article 81 [B] of the Education Code for Kendriya Vidyalaya gives arbitrary power to the authority and it is ultra vires to Article 14 of the Constitution of India, since under the said Article, holding of an enquiry is dispensed with thereby giving no opportunity to the delinquent to put forth his say.
Article 81[B] of the Code reads as follows “Termination of services of an employee found guilty of immoral behaviour towards students: Where the Commissioner is satisfied after such a summary enquiry as he deems proper and practicable in the circumstances of the case that any member of the Kendriya vidyalaya is prima-facie guilty of moral turpitude involving sexual offence or exhibition of immoral sexual behaviour towards any student, he can terminate the services of that employee by giving him one month's or three month's pay and allowances accordingly as the guilty employee is temporary or permanent in the service of the Sangathan. In such cases, procedure prescribed for holding enquiry for imposing major penalty in accordance with CCS [CCA] Rules, 1965 as applicable to the employees of theKendriya vidyalayaSangathan, shall be dispensed with, provided that the Commissioner is of the opinion that it is not expedient to hold regular enquiry on account of embarrassment to student or his guardians or such other practical difficulties. The commissioner shall record in writing the reasons under which it is not reasonably practicable to hold such enquiry and he shall keep the Chairman of the Sangathan informed of the circumstances leading to such termination of services.”
Dismissing the Writ petition, the Court said “we are unable to persuade ourselves to cause interference in the order of termination and, also the impugned judgment and order passed by the CAT. We are of the view that the impugned termination order and also the reasons / findings recorded by the Tribunal are in consonance with the relevant provisions of law and also material placed on record. We are also not inclined to accept the argument of the counsel appearing for the petitioner that Article 81 [B] of the Education Code for Kendriya Vidyalaya is ultra vires to Article 14 of the Constitution of India.”
Read the Judgment here.