PRODIP KANTA BOSE Vs. GENERAL MANAGER, NORTHEAST FRONTIER RAILWAYS AND OTHERS
HIGH COURT OF GAUHATI
PRODIP KANTA BOSE
GENERAL MANAGER, NORTHEAST FRONTIER RAILWAYS
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(1.) By this application under Article 226 of the Constitution of India the petitioner has challenged the Order No. E/283/III/30 Pt. V (e), Pandu, the 21st January, 1975, by which the petitioner, who was officiating APO/NBQ, has,been reverted to Class III service (Annexure- 'J' to the petition) as well as Order No. 18E/1/85(0) dated 25/26-6-74, by which the petitioner was directed to be in readiness to, appear in the fresh selection of APO, on the date and time to be notified in due course (Annexure 'E') and also letter No. 18E/1/85(0) dated 26-7-74 (Annexure 'G'), by which the petitioner was informed that he cannot be exempted from empanelment without selection under any circumstances.
(2.) The petitioner entered the Railway service on 17-8-1949 and thereafter he appeared at the selection test in the year.1971 and came out successful but unfortunately he was not empanelled as the rules did not permit. Subsequently he was promoted to officiate as APO, Glass II, by order dated 30-11-1971, in which post he joined on 612-1971. This order dated 30-11-1971 (Annexure 'D' to the petition) reads as follows:
"1. Sri P. K. Basu, Oifg. CA to GM in scale Rs. 380-520 is temporarily appointed to officiate as APO (Class II) and posted as APO/NBQ in place of Shri A. Mukherjee. The appointment as APO of Shri Basu is purely temporary and on ad hoc arrangement. This will not confer on him any claim for retention in the post or seniority etc. over those who are already senior to him.
2. Shri A. Mukherjee on relief will report to Chief Engineer for further orders of posting. This order issues with the approval of G. M."
While the petitioner was holding that officiating post of APO, by the impugned order dated 21-1-75 he has been reverted to his substantive post in Class III service, which has been mainly challenged in this petition.
(3.) Mr. P. K. Bhattacharjee, the learned Counsel for the petitioner, submits that the petitioner came out successful in the selection test of 1971 and that position is admitted by the Respondents. But he was not included in the panel drawn up by the Selection Board. Anyway, within 1971 itself the petitioner was promoted to the post of APO and which post he held admittedly till 21-1-1975, that is, the date of his reversion. In the premises, the learned Counsel submits that he must be deemed to be included in the panel and also he must be deemed to have been promoted to the post in which he was officiating and the order of reversion is illegal. In this connection he has referred to Rules 203 and 206 of the Rules governing the promotion of subordinate staff, Chapter II of the Indian Railways Establishment Manual. Rule 203 reads as follows:
"203. The number of candidates to be placed on the panel should not exceed the number of existing vacancies together with the number of vacancies anticipated during the course of the succeeding 12 months.";
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