PRAVIN KUMAR Vs. UNION OF INDIA
SUPREME COURT OF INDIA (FROM: BOMBAY)
UNION OF INDIA
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SURYA KANT, J. -
(1.)The present civil appeal, which has been heard over videoconferencing, is directed against the order dated 05.05.2009 passed by a Division Bench of the High Court of Bombay in WP No. 1001/2001, whereby appellant's plea for quashing disciplinary proceedings and setting-aside a dismissal order on charges of corruption and extra-constitutional conduct while employed as a paramilitary officer, was rejected.
(2.)The appellant joined the Central Industrial Security Force ("CISF") in January, 1995 as a Sub-Inspector. After completing requisite training in Hyderabad, he was allocated to Mumbai Office of the Western Zone and posted at the local unit of Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd ("BPCL") in March, 1996. Although he was initially deputed to perform shift duty, but since July, 1997 he was deployed in the Crime and Intelligence Wing. As evidenced by an office order dated 08.05.1998, the appellant was specifically entrusted with conducting surprise searches of personnel and taking strict action against anyone indulging in corruption.
(3.)On 28.02.1999 at around 6PM, Constable Ram Avtar Sharma (CW-1; hereinafter "Sharma") was commuting in a CISF bus near the BPCL compound when Inspector Hiralal Chaudhary (PW-1; hereinafter, "Chaudhary") noticed a large bundle of high-denomination notes in Sharma's pocket. Suspicious, Chaudhary got the bus turned back towards the BPCL compound, and forcibly made Sharma deboard near the North-gate. Amidst witnesses, Chaudhary searched Sharma's person, during which a total sum of Rs 10,780 in the form of 100 notes of Rs 100 and the rest in smaller denominations was recovered. No explanation for the large sum of unaccounted cash was forthcoming from Sharma, except for a plea for mercy, post which the amount was seized and the incident recorded in the General Diary ("GD") kept at the North-gate of the BPCL compound.
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