PRODIP CHOUDHURY Vs. STATE OF ASSAM AND 4 ORS REP BY COMMISSIONER AND SECY EDUCATION ELE DEPTT
HIGH COURT OF GAUHATI
State Of Assam And 4 Ors Rep By Commissioner And Secy Education Ele Deptt
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Manojit Bhuyan, J. -
(1.) Heard Mr. Parag J. Saikia, learned counsel for the petitioner as well as Mr. A. Deka, learned counsel representing all the respondents.
(2.) Petitioner served as an Assistant Teacher in Refugee L.P. School, Mariani in the district of Jorhat. Challenge is made to the order contained in the letter dated 29.10.2014 issued under the hand of the Under Secretary to the Government of Assam, Elementary Education Department instructing the Director of Elementary Education, Assam to remove the petitioner from service on ground of having remained absent from duties with effect from 17.06.2009 upto 2014 without any information. The primary grounds of challenge are that the order seeking his removal stands vitiated as there has been no compliance of the principle of natural justice in reaching the impugned decision. According to the petitioner, he was neither served with any Show Cause Notice nor supplied with any Statement of Allegations and/or with any list of witnesses or documents. Also, no disciplinary proceeding was initiated or held in which the petitioner was allowed to participate.
(3.) Stand taken by the Respondent No.2 i.e. the Director of Elementary Education, Assam in the affidavit-in-opposition are that the petitioner was unauthorizedly absent from duty with effect from 07.06.2009 on account of the fact that his wife, who was a Post Office agent, was absconding due to a financial scam committed by her. In this respect, a police case being Mariani P.S. Case No.75/2009 was also registered under Section 406/420/468 IPC. It is stated that on account of unauthorized absence of the petitioner, a departmental proceeding was drawn up and the said proceeding also stood completed. As per the Report of the Enquiry Officer, the petitioner was found absent from duty with effect from 07.06.2009. The Enquiry Officer i.e. the Additional Deputy Commissioner & I/C Deputy Inspector of Schools, Jorhat suggested that the period of absence of the petitioner be treated as a period without pay. This finds mention in the letter of the Addl. Deputy Commissioner dated 12.09.2012 addressed to the Director of Elementary Education, Assam.;
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