Decided on July 20,2007

S.L.SALUJA Appellant


SANJIV KHANNA, J - (1.) The appellant, Mr. S.L. Saluja has filed the present appeal against the judgment dated 9th February, 2004 dismissing the writ petition filed by him for quashing disciplinary proceedings that have been initiated against him.
(2.) The appellant joined the State Bank of India in 1967 as a clerk. He was promoted from time to time. He was working as an officer in the senior management grade scale, when on 29th May, 1999 disciplinary proceedings were initiated against him.
(3.) During the pendency of the disciplinary proceedings, the appellant filed Civil Writ No. 2840/2000 challenging the same on the ground that he had retired from service in terms of Rule 19 of the State Bank of India Officers Service Rules after completing 30 years of pensionable service on 31st July, 1997 or at least after attaining age of 58 years on 31st December, 1999. The said contention did not find merit with the learned Single Judge who dismissed the writ petition, inter alia, holding that even after completing 30 years of pensionable service in July, 1997, the appellant had continued to be in employment and had drawn regular salary till his suspension on 1st August, 1997. Thereafter, he was paid suspension allowance. Learned Single Judge also made reference to the relevant rules under which an employee could continue in service till the age of 60 years. Learned Single Judge upheld the contention of the respondent bank that they had right to extend service of the appellant beyond 58 years as departmental proceedings under relevant rules had been initiated against him. The learned Single Judge also rejected the contention of the appellant that the order extending the service of the appellant beyond 58 years was null and void as it was communicated after 31st December, 1999 vide letter dated 24th January, 2000 by relying upon judgment of the Supreme Court in Collector of Central Excise, Madras versus M.M. Rubber and Co. (1992) Supp. (1) SCC 471, inter alia, holding that an order or decision of the authority becomes operative and comes into force when it is signed or made. Thereafter, the said authority ceases to have locus paetentiae and right to re-draft and tear of the earlier order. The purpose and object of communication of the order passed is to make the party adversely affected, aware of the said order passed and also for the purpose of calculating limitation period. The decision of the Supreme Court in the case of Bachhittar Singh versus State of Punjab, AIR 1963 SC 395 was distinguished. Learned Single Judge also relied upon another decision of the Supreme Court in State Bank of India versus C.B. Dhull, (1998) 2 SCC 544 to uphold the right of the respondent bank to continue with the disciplinary proceedings after retirement of the appellant.;

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