B.H.KHAWAS Vs. UNION OF INDIA & OTHERS
SUPREME COURT OF INDIA (FROM: BOMBAY)
UNION OF INDIA AND OTHERS
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(1.) This appeal challenges the judgment of the Division Bench of the High Court of Judicature at Bombay in Writ Petition No. 7101 of 2005 dated 8th February 2012. The High Court reversed the decision of the Central Administrative Tribunal, Bombay Bench at Mumbai in OA No. 419 of 2004, dated 3rd March, 2005. The Tribunal had allowed the original application filed by the appellant whilst setting aside the termination order dated 8th June, 2004 and instead had directed the respondents to re-instate the appellant in service.
(2.) Briefly stated, the appellant was appointed as "Chemical Examiner Grade I" in the Customs and Central Excise Department in the pay scale of Rs. 3000-100-3500-125-4500, vide appointment letter dated 16th June, 1995, subject to fulfilling terms and conditions mentioned herein. As the appellant was appointed against the vacancy reserved for Scheduled Tribe, Condition (vii) of the said Appointment Letter is of some relevance. It reads thus:-
"(vii). In case you belong to Scheduled Caste/Tribe, the appointment is provisional and is subject to verification of Scheduled Caste/Tribe certificate through proper channels and if on verification, your claim to belong to Scheduled Caste or Scheduled Tribe, as the case may be, is found to be false, your services will be terminated forthwith without assigning any reason and without prejudice to such further action that may be taken under the Indian penal Code for production of false certificate."
(3.) Before joining the post of Chemical Examiner in the Customs and Central Excise Department on 21st November, 1995, the appellant had worked in other Departments of the Government of India; on being selected through the Union Public Service Commission, to the post of "Senior Technical Assistant" in the Indian Bureau of Mines from 14.02.1985 to 12.05.1986; as an "Assistant Chemist (Group B Gazetted)" in the Geological Survey of India between 15.05.1986 to 31.05.1989; as "Chemist (Groups A Gazetted)" in the Indian Bureau of Mines between 05.06.1989 up to 12.04.1994; and as "Deputy Director (Ind. Hygiene)" in the Directorate General Factory Advice Services and Labour Institutes from 13.04.1994 to 10.11.1995. The appellant was declared confirmed in the grade of "Assistant Chemist" w.e.f. 15.05.1988 vide notification dated 05.05.1995. All these appointments were made against the Scheduled Tribe reserved category. However, lastly, the appellant joined the Customs and Central Excise Department as "Chemical Examiner Grade I", from 21st November, 1995 pursuant to appointment order dated 16th June, 1995. He was working on that post till his services were terminated vide order dated 8th June, 2004, consequent to the decision of the Caste Certificate Scrutiny Committee that the appellant belonged to caste "Koshti", which is not a Scheduled Tribe in the State of Maharashtra.;
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