Kerala HC Reinstates KSRTC Conductor Suspended For Circulating 'Derogatory' Whatsapp Post Against CM Pinarayi Vijayan [Read Order]

Kerala HC Reinstates KSRTC Conductor Suspended For Circulating

The Kerala High Court has directed to reinstate a KSRTC conductor placed under suspension for circulating allegedly derogatory remarks against the Chief Minister of Kerala Pinarayi Vijayan through Whatsapp.

Justice Muhamed Mustaque noted that there are no other allegations other than this against S.Prasanth, who is under suspension since 10th May 2019. The court also observed that if materials related to suspension are already gathered, there is no reason to keep the employee under suspension.

The reinstatement is subject to the disciplinary proceedings.

The court referred to the judgment in Anil Kumar A.P. vs. Mahathma Gandhi University in which it had ordered the re-instatement of Prasad Pannian, Associate Professor of Central University of Kerala, who was placed under suspension for a making a post in Facebook criticising the University's action against a student.

""One cannot be prevented from expressing his views merely because he is an employee. In a democratic society, every institution is governed by democratic norms. Healthy criticism is a better way to govern a public institution", Justice Mustaque had said in that order.

"Emotional outburst of a disgruntled, through social media in a louder voice is part of his right of free speech. In certain circumstances, there are chances that such public outburst would intersect with the Institution's interest. What is acceptable behaviour by use of social media is a subject matter of various debate in this country and elsewhere. Absence of social media guidelines often lead to confrontation of this nature.". it was further observed.

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