(1.)The Rule is directed against an order of suspension passed on the petitioner Sri B. B. Mondal, Addl. Member, Board of Revenue, Government of West Bengal, dated 7th June, 1972. The petitioner joined IAS service in 1949. Between the period 12th March, 1968 to 7th July, 1971 the petitioner was the Commissioner of Refugee Rehabilitation & Ex. Officio Secretary of R. R. R. Department, Government of West Bengal. Between 8th July, 1971 and 7th August 1971 the petitioner was Director General of Evacuees of Bangladesh. On 8th November, 1971 the petitioner's house was searched by the Deputy Inspector General of Police, C.B.I. and others on 9th November, 1971 the petitioner's wife's Locker at Central Bank was also opened. On 16th November 1971 the Chief Secretary to the State of West Bengal asked the petitioner to fill up certain proforma. On 22nd November, 1971 the petitioner asked for papers seized by the Police. On 21st December, 1971 the Chief Secretary forwarded a letter of the Deputy Inspector General of Police to the petitioner calling for the tour programme from 1969 to October, 1971. The petitioner wanted to know about the alleged charge against him and wanted to know the particulars thereof but no such charge was given on 27th May, 1972 a paper of the Ruling Party 'JANABANI' published a news regarding the petitioner's suspension. The petitioner moved the High Court on 1st June, 1972 and rule was issued on the respondent by the Court which was returnable on 8th June, 1972. On 8th June, 1972 the petitioner went to the Office and received the impugned order dated 7th June, 1972 by which the petitioner was suspended. The petitioner moved the High Court on 8th June, 1972 for a rule and obtained the rule on the same date. The copy of the impugned order is annexure 'M' to the main rule which is as follows:
?Dated Calcutta the 7th June, 1972.
Whereas an investigation relating to a criminal charge is pending against you Shri B. B. Mondal, IAS Additional Member, Board of Revenue, West Bengal in respect of your conduct while you were employed as Refugee Rehabilitation Commissioner and Ex Officio Secretary Refugee Relief & Rehabilitation Department and whereas it is considered necessary that you should be placed under suspension.
Now therefore, in exercise of the power conferred by sub-rule (3) of rule 3 of the All India Services (Discipline and Appeal) Rules 1969 the Governor is pleased hereby to place you Shri B. B. Mondal, IAS Additional Member, Board of Revenue, West Bengal, under suspension with effect from the date of service of this order upon you and until the termination of all proceedings relating to that charges under investigation.
By order of the Governor,
Sd/- N. C. Sen Gupta
Chief Secretary to the Govt. of
(2.)On behalf of the respondents Nos.1 and 2 affidavit has been sworn in by the Chief Secretary to the Government of West Bengal and on behalf of the respondents Nos.3 and 4 has been sworn in by Sri Samit Kumar Dutt, Superintendent of Police, Delhi Special Police Establishment Central Bureau of Investigation in Calcutta. On behalf of the State Government it was stated in the affidavit that upon receiving a complaint in writing on 27th September, 1971 made to the Governor of West Bengal relating to malpractice committed by proprietors of some firms and some officers of the Refugee Relief and Rehabilitation Department and the Irrigation and Waterways Department of Government of West Bengal in connection with the purchases of tarpaulin for incoming refugees of Bangladesh during 1971 it was suspended that offences under section 120B/420 of Indian Penal Code and also under Section 5(2) read with section 5 (1) (d) of the Prevention of Corruption Act 1947 were committed. The petitioner was during that period the Commissioner of Refugee Relief and Rehabilitation Department of the Government of West Bengal. It is stated that the Governor of West Bengal directed that an investigation into the said matter be made by the Delhi Special Police Establishment, Calcutta Branch. A first information report was lodged with the Delhi Special Police Establishment, Calcutta Branch which was recorded under section 154 of the Cr.P.C. by the Deputy Superintendent of Police of the said Delhi Special Police Establishment. An investigation by the said authorities under Chapter XIV of the Criminal Procedure Code with regard to the said charges is in progress. The said Police authorities submitted two progress reports to the Government of West Bengal. The examination of the second report submitted by the said Police authorities revealed certain facts against the petitioner Sri B. B. Mondal. The Government of West Bengal had carefully considered the said matter and was of the opinion that the charge against the petitioner was in connection with his position as a Government servant and that it would not be proper to allow him to carry on his normal duties until the termination of all proceedings relating to the charges under investigation. On consideration of the said matter the Chief Minister, West Bengal on 3rd June, 1972 took a decision that the petitioner should be suspended and the order of suspension was made on 7th June, 1972 in the bonafide exercise of powers conferred under sub-rule (3) of rule 3 of the All India Services (Discipline and Appeal) Rules, 1969. In course of the investigation, the S.P.E. conducted the search of the petitioner's house as well as Locker of the Petitioner's wife. It is stated that the State Government considered it necessary that the petitioner should be suspended pending the investigation relating to the criminal charge.
(3.)In the affidavit filed by the respondents Nos.3 and 4 it has been stated that the police investigation was started on the basis of a complaint made by a respectable citizen to the Government of West Bengal. The said complaint was forwarded by the Chief Secretary to the Government of West Bengal to the Delhi Special Police Establishment at Calcutta and thereupon the said Police Establishment at Calcutta initiated a police investigation after recording a first information report according to law and registering an investigation case. It is stated therein that at present no judicial or quasi-judicial proceeding is pending in any Court or before any authority against the petitioner. The police authorities are still making investigation into cognizable offences. It is submitted that the investigation cannot be interfered with by this Court. It is further stated that the investigation is not malafide but is in due process of law. On these pleadings the petitioner came to trial. Before I refer to the argument advanced by the parties it is convenient for me to set out rule 3 of the All India Services (Discipline & Appeal) Rules, 1969:
?3. Suspension during disciplinary proceedings: -
(1) If, having regard to the nature of the charges and the circumstances in any case, the Government which initiates and disciplinary proceedings is satisfied that it is necessary or desirable to place under suspension the member of the Service against whom such proceedings are started, that Government may -
(a) if the member of the Service is serving under it, pass an order placing him under suspension, or
(b) if the member of the Service is serving under another Government, request that Government to place him under suspension, pending the conclusion of the inquiry and the passing of the final order in the case:
Provided that in cases where there is a difference of opinion between two State Governments, the matter shall be referred to the Central Government for its decision.
(2) A member of the service, who is detained in official custody whether on a criminal charge or otherwise for a period longer than forty-eight hours, shall be deemed to have been suspended by the Government concerned under this rule.
(3) A member of the service in respect of, or against, whom an investigation, inquiry or trial relating to a criminal charge is pending may, at the discretion of the Government under which he is serving, be placed under suspension until the termination of all proceedings relating to that charge, if the charge is connected with his position as a Government servant or is likely to embarrass him in the discharge of his duties or involves moral turpitude.
(4) A member of the Service shall be deemed to have been placed under suspension with effect from the date of conviction of, in the event of conviction for a criminal offence, he is not forthwith dismissed or removed or compulsorily retired consequent on such conviction provided that the conviction carries a sentence of imprisonment exceeding forty-eight hours.
(5) Where a penalty of dismissal, removal or compulsory retirement from service imposed upon a member of the service under suspension is set aside in appeal or on review under these rules and the case is remitted for/further inquiry or action or with any other directions, the order of his suspension shall be deemed to have continued in force on and from the date of the original order of dismissal, removal or compulsory retirement and shall remain in force until further orders.
(6) Where a penalty of dismissal, removal or compulsory retirement from service imposed upon a member of the service is set aside or declared or rendered void in consequence of or by a decision of a Court of law, and the disciplinary authority, on a consideration of the circumstances of the case, decides to hold further inquiry against him on the allegations on which the penalty of dismissal, removal or compulsory retirement was originally imposed, the member of the Service shall be deemed to have been placed under suspension by the Central Government from the date of the original order of dismissal, removal or compulsory retirement and shall continue to remain under suspension until further orders.
(7) (a) An order of suspension made or deemed to have been made under this rule shall continue to remain in force until it is modified or revoked by the authority competent to do so.
(b) Where a member of the Service is suspended or is deemed to have been suspended, whether in connection with any disciplinary proceeding or otherwise, and any other disciplinary proceeding is commenced against him during the continuance of that suspension, the authority competent to place him under suspension may, for reasons to be recorded by him in writing, direct that the member of the service shall continue to be under suspension with the termination of all or any of such proceedings;
(c) An order of suspension made or deemed to have been made under this rule may at any time be modified or revoked by the authority which made or is deemed to have made the order?.