Jammu & Kashmir & Ladakh HC Rules on Discontinuing Services of Probationary Govt Employee for Submitting False Information

LI Network

Published on: 5 August 2023 at 15:49 IST

The Jammu & Kashmir & Ladakh High Court recently delivered a judgment on the termination of services of a probationary government employee for submitting false information.

The court referred to the case of Daya Shankar Yadav vs. Union of India (2010) and held that the respondents were justified in terminating the services of the petitioner, who had been booked for a serious offense like murder.

The court clarified that even after the petitioner’s acquittal in the criminal case, the respondents had the authority to discharge him from service if they find that the acquittal was based on technical grounds or if it was not a clear and honorable acquittal.

Justice Sanjay Dhar, in a Single Judge Bench, emphasized that non-disclosure or submission of false information by a government employee during the probation period is sufficient reason for discontinuing their services without conducting an inquiry.

The employer has the power under sub-rule (1) of Rule 5 of the Rules of 1965 to discharge the probationer without giving any reason.

However, the court cautioned that before taking such action, the appointing authority must consider the nature of the information that was withheld or falsely provided by the employee.

Additionally, the court highlighted the significance of examining whether the exoneration of the employee from the criminal case was due to technicalities or it was an honorable discharge.

Advocate Ashok K. Pandey appeared for the petitioner, while Advocate Vikar-ul-Haq represented the respondent.

The case involved a petitioner who was appointed as a Constable in the Central Reserve Police Force but was later embroiled in a criminal case during his earned leave period. He was accused of multiple offenses under the Indian Penal Code.

The petitioner was suspended and eventually received a termination notice. He claimed that he was unaware of the pending criminal case until after two years of service and challenged the termination order. However, the petition was later withdrawn, and he was acquitted of the charges.

The High Court noted that the petitioner had filled a form at the time of his appointment, which did not include any requirement to disclose information about involvement in a criminal case.

A verification form, which asked for such information, was not found in the records.

Hence, the court allowed the petitioner to represent his case, including details about non-disclosure and subsequent acquittal, to the appropriate authority, directing them to make a decision within one month of receiving the representation.

The court’s judgment clarifies the grounds for discontinuing the services of a probationary government employee if they provide false information and emphasizes the importance of considering the circumstances surrounding their acquittal.

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