Decided on July 08,2005

Ramdas Khunte Appellant


L.C.BHADOO,J. - (1.) BY this writ petition under Articles 226 and 227 of the Constitution of India the petitioner has challenged the selection of respondent No.5 made by respondents Corporation based on an interview, which was held on 8-1- 2004 for the award of dealership of retail outlet of respondent Corporation to be established at Sarangarh.
(2.) BRIEF facts, as set out in the petition, necessary for the disposal of this petition are that the respondents-Indian Oil Corporation for establishing a retail outlet at Sarangarh decided to award the dealership to a suitable candidate and for that purpose, in the first instance, published an advertisement in the newspaper dated 30-3-1999 inviting applications from the eligible candidates on the terms & conditions set-out in the said advertisement. In pursuance of the said advertisement the petitioner, respondent No.5 and some other persons applied for the allotment of said dealership. However, the interview could not be held based on that advertisement and again a fresh advertisement (Annexure P-12) was issued which was published in the Hindi daily deshbandhu dated 14-4-2000. One of the eligibility condition for award of dealership was that the applicant must be a resident of one of these Districts i.e. Jashpur, Raigarh, Sarguja, Korba, Raipur, Janjgir- Champa & Mahasamund. It was also made clear that preference will be given to the candidate, who is the resident of same district where the retail outlet is to be established, if other things being equal. The petitioner's case is that he appeared before the interview board on 8-1-2004 and at the time of interview of one Shri Pawan Kumar Agarwal, a businessman of Sarangarh, was present with respondent No.5 and openly boasted that the dealership of Sarangarh retail outlet is going to be awarded to respondent No.5 only, as he has settled the matter with the officials. After interview when the petitioner came to know that he has been placed at Sr. No.2, whereas respondent No.5, who is resident of Tehsil Bilaigarh, District Raipur has been placed at Sr. No.1 Thereafter, the petitioner applied for copies of necessary documents but the tome was not supplied to him then the petitioner sent an application by post on 10-1-2004. He also made complaint through a telegram regarding the Partiality and favoritism in the selection process. The petitioner's further case is that respondent No.5 has been able to secure position because of unduefavour and political influence. Therefore, it has been prayed that the said selection be quashed and in the first instance, respondents No.1 to 4 be directed to award the dealership to the petitioner or in the alternative respondents be directed to cancel the interview, select list and hold the interview afresh. Reply has been filed on behalf of respondent Nos. 1 to 4 in which has it has been mentioned that the selection of respondent No.5 has been made on the basis of interview and decision was arrived at after considering the candidate's conduct, caliber, personality, intellect, business acumen, cultural disposition and knowledge of oil business relating to petroleum products, therefore, the said decision cannot be changed. The selection committee selected the most capable candidate, finding of the committee Based on the interview and the assessment of candidates during interview cannot be analyzed on comparison or by theories alone. It has further been mentioned that the allegations contained in the petition are baseless, perverse and untenable. Ultimately, it has been prayed that the petition of the petitioner deserves to be dismissed.
(3.) RETURN on behalf of respondent No.5 has also been filed in which it has been mentioned that he applied for allotment of dealership of retail outlet of respondents- Corporation in response to the advertisement. Respondent No.5 does not know any businessman or politician who is alleged to have backing and supporting him. As far as Shri Pawan Kumar Agarwal is concerned, he is the President of Sarangarh Truck Owners' Association and he had given certificate to respondent No.5 to the effect that members of Association will purchase the diesel from respondent No.5, if the dealership of retail outlet is allotted to him. It has further been mentioned that respondent No.5 belongs to scheduled caste community, comes from a very poor family and in order to establish himself and his family he had applied for dealership of retail outlet. The petitioner has made false allegations against respondent No.5 only to harass him. The petitioner is trying his level best for cancellation of the award of said dealership. It has further been mentioned that respondent No.5 was surprised to know that the details, which have been, filed by him are known to the petitioner and this fact itself shows that the petitioner is an influenced persons. Respondent No.5 vehemently denies the allegation of undue favour & political influence and stated that there is no basis to support the submission. Ultimately, prayed for dismissal of the petition of the petitioner.;

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