Decided on November 28,1963



P.B.MUKHARJI, J. - (1.)THIS is an application under Article 226 of the Constitution by the petitioner, Hemanta Kumar Bhattacharjee, who was a civil servant in the Postal Department, Superior Subordinate Services, under the Central Government of India and also the sub -postmaster of the Mission Row Post Office for some time. It is unnecessary to N go into the details of this long and chequered misfortune of this petitioner and only a broad reference to the major events may be detailed below for an appreciation of the points involved in this application.
(2.)THE petitioner's case is that he entered service on 1 August 1921, and retired on 5 December 1959. He applied for pension and death -cum -retirement gratuity under the rules but for these four years has not been given the same. He has received so far only a kind of anticipatory pension of Rs. 50 per month under the rules. The petitioner reached the age of sixty years on 5 December 1959. His case is that he was granted five extensions of service. He had a long period of suspension from 3 September 1950 to 6 January 1958. The suspension was held by Court to be illegal and invalid and they were quashed and it is said that the reports of his case appeared in 56 C.W.N. 676 and 58 C.W.N. 1. As the suspension had been declared to be invalid, the petitioner was entitled to all the dues during the period of such suspension. It appears from annexure B dated 7 December 1959 to the affidavit of Deo Kumar Singh of the office of the Superintendent of Post Offices, Central Calcutta Division, that there was a pre -audit bill for Rs. 7,057.07 drawn in favour of the petitioner which was not passed by the office for various objections one of which was that the period of his suspension was not regularized. This annexure, however, notes the fact that the pre -audit bill for Rs. 7,098.47 was provisionally passed by the office of the Superintendent of Post Offices and was paid to the petitioner on 18 September 1959.
In the meantime what happened was that a criminal case was instituted on 5 September 1960 under inter alia Sections 120B, 262 and 263 of the Indian Penal Code and Criminal Procedure Code and Section 5 (2)(b) of the Prevention of Corruption Act. This Criminal Case against the petitioner has a long and ineffective record and is said to be still pending without much progress. At one stage the jurisdiction of the Court whether it was the Chief Presidency Magistrate's Court or the Special Court was agitated and had finally to be decided by the Supreme Court which held that it was the Special Court which had the jurisdiction. But then again when the matter came up before the Special Court objections were taken by the petitioner that the Central Establishment, Police, had no jurisdiction although his objections were overruled by the Special Court. The matter is now pending in this Court under revision. So from 1950 to 1963 nothing tangible has flowed from the alleged criminal case against the petitioner. The other event is in 1951 when the petitioner brought a suit being No. 3772 of 1951 in this Court against the Additional Director of Postal Services for recovery of damages amounting to Ra. 10,000. The suit was dismissed with costs by G. K. Mitter, J., on 23 June 1959 who observed: it is to be regretted that such an unworthy cause as the plaintiff's in this case should be pursued with so much vigour and that so much perjured evidence be adduced in support of a false claim. An appeal is now pending against that judgment being Appeal No, 62 of 1960.

(3.)THE main grievance now of the petitioner is that the Government and the Superintendent of Post Offices, Director of Postal Services and Senior Deputy Accountant -General, Posts and Telegraphs, Calcutta, who are respondents in this application, are wrongfully and illegally withholding the pension and gratuity reliefs due and payable to the petitioner under the Civil Service Regulations. By a letter dated 5 December 1959 the Superintendent of Post Offices, Central Calcutta, wrote to the petitioner -as follows: As ordered in this office memorandum No. B3 -329' dated 4 June 1959 you are permitted to retire from service with effect from 6 December 1959 but at the same time you are hereby informed that it is proposed to take action against you under Article 351(1) of the Civil Service Regulations.

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