Decided on September 27,2007



MUKUNDAKAM SHARMA, CJ - (1.) This appeal, being LPA No.129/1998, and Writ Petition (C) No.562/2000 are filed by Capt. D. Kalia. The appeal revolves around the off rostering of the appellant from duty, whereas the Writ Petition relates to his challenge to the action taken by the respondents in his disciplinary proceedings. As the facts of both the cases are inter-connected, we took up both the matters for consideration at the same hearing and propose to dispose of both the appeal and the writ petition by this common judgment and order.
(2.) This appeal, being LPA No.129/1998, is filed by Capt. D. Kalia who is aggrieved by the judgment and order dated 22nd January, 1998 passed by the learned Single Judge dismissing the Writ Petition filed by the appellant registered as C.W.P. No.5040/1997. The appellant herein joined the Indian Airlines as a trainee Pilot in the month of March, 1988. On 22nd October, 1997 the appellant was assigned duty to operate IC 883 from Delhi to Sharjah. Due to certain operational requirement on that day three cockpit crew were required to travel as additional crew. It was alleged by the respondents that despite repeated requests the appellant insisted for obtaining written instructions which delayed the flight by about 1 hour 15 minutes and caused immense inconvenience to the passengers. It was also alleged that on arrival at Sharjah the appellant informed the Manager Indian Airlines to re-schedule the flight on 24.10.1997 instead of its scheduled time thereby causing disruption, heavy financial penalty on the airline and inconvenience to traveling public and affecting Indian Airlines image. He was, therefore, asked to show cause as to why disciplinary proceedings should not be initiated against him. The appellant submitted a reply to the aforesaid show cause notice under his letter dated 26.10.1997. Almost about the same time, a charge sheet was issued by the respondent through the disciplinary authority to the appellant. The contention raised in the writ petition filed by the appellant is that the respondent should not have resorted to the action of off- rostering the appellant, which itself is in the nature of punishment without finding him guilty of the charges leveled against him.
(3.) The writ petition filed on the aforesaid allegations of off-rostering by the appellant was considered by the learned Single Judge and by a detailed speaking order the writ petition was dismissed. It was held by the learned Single Judge, in the said decision which is under challenge in this appeal, that the only point for consideration in the writ petition was whether the action of off rostering the appellant was in accordance with the provisions of the settlement arrived at with the union. On going through the records it was also held that the respondent had acted in accordance with the terms of the settlement and that having regard to the larger public interest, when grave misconduct was alleged against the appellant, the appellant could not be permitted to handle the delicate work of operating and flying Aircrafts and that one could easily visualise the frame of mind of the appellant. Being aggrieved by the aforesaid findings and conclusions arrived at by the learned Single Judge, the present appeal is filed. Actions were taken in the disciplinary proceeding as against which the appellant has filed a writ petition. We have heard the learned counsel appearing for the parties in both the matters and dispose of the same by this common judgment and order.;

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