21 Aug 2019 4:49 AM GMT
RTI Activist, Abhishek Kumar Singh, has moved a petition seeking a writ in the nature of Quo-Warranto before the Madhya Pradesh High Court, challenging the appointment of ten officers in the Municipal Corporation of Jabalpur and three in Municipal Council of Bhedaghat on grounds of procedural irregularity. The High Court had earlier ordered all government departments of the State to...
RTI Activist, Abhishek Kumar Singh, has moved a petition seeking a writ in the nature of Quo-Warranto before the Madhya Pradesh High Court, challenging the appointment of ten officers in the Municipal Corporation of Jabalpur and three in Municipal Council of Bhedaghat on grounds of procedural irregularity.
The High Court had earlier ordered all government departments of the State to hold enquiries into illegal appointments, in a public interest litigation titled Mansukh Saraf v. Arun Kumar Tiwari & Ors., W.P. No. 198/1999. As many as 516 appointments were canceled by the high court last year. However, the Municipal Corporation did not make available the report on illegal appointments therein and appropriate action could not be taken against its officers appointed illegally.
The petitioner's case is that the aforesaid thirteen officers were already serving in various public corporations and their services were later merged in the respective Municipal Corporations. Such merger was alleged to be ultra vires a propos the Madhya Pradesh Municipal Corporation Act, 1956.
"Certain cases of private respondents are such that they were initially an employee of some different public corporation but eventually their services have been merged in Municipal Corporation, Jabalpur. Whereas, the MP Municipal Corporation Act, 1956 has no provision regarding merger of services", the petition read.
The initial appointment of two officers was alleged to be illegal in as much as the same was not done by the competent authority and their appointment letters were never forwarded to any state instrumentalities which supervised the functioning of the corporation.
Seven officers' appointments were alleged to be contrary to the provisions of Madhya Pradesh Special Area Development Authority (Chairman and Officers and Servants Recruitment and Conditions of Service) Rules of 1976 in consideration that their probation period was diminished to be one year instead of the statuary requirement of two.
It was also alleged that three respondent officers were appointed as Class IV employees in violation of Rule 6 of the said Rules which provides that such appointments shall be requisitioned from local employment exchange.
The petitioner submitted that he and other persons were being made victims of unqualified officials operating in a public office of high significance and urged the court to interfere with these illegal appointments in light of Renu & Ors. v. District & Sessions Judge, Tis Hazari Courts, Delhi & Anr., (2014) 14 SCC 50 wherein the Apex Court had held that the writ of Quo-Warranto was a "judicial weapon to control executive from making appointment to public offices against law".
Taking into account these submissions in the admission hearing yesterday, Justice Vishal Dhagat issued notice to the concerned authorities in the case captioned "Abhishek Kumar Singh v. Satte of Madhya Pradesh & Ors.", asking them to file a reply.