S. C. Agrawal, J. -
(1.)This appeal, by special leave, is directed against the order dated August 12, 1981, passed by the High Court of Delhi dismissing the writ petition filed by the appellant. In the writ petition the appellant had challenged the validity of the finding and the sentence recorded by the General Court Martial on November 29, 1978, the order dated May 11, 1979., passed by the Chief of Army Staff confirming the findings and the sentence recorded by the General Court Martial and the order dated May 6, 1980, passed by the Central Government dismissing the petition filed by the appellant under Section 164 (2) of the Army Act, 1950 (hereinafter referred to as 'the Act').
(2.)The appellant held a permanent commission, as an officer, in the regular army and was holding the substantive rank of Captain. He was officiating as a Major. On December 27, 1974, the appellant took over as the Officer Commanding of 38 Coy. ASC (Sup) Type 'A' attached to the Military Hospital, Jhansi. In August 1975, the appellant had gone to attend, a training course and he returned in the first week of November 1975. In his absence Captain G. C. Chhabra was the officer commanding the unit of the appellant. During this period Captain Chhabra submitted a Contingent Bill dated September 25, 1975 for Rs. 16,280/ - for winter liveries of the depot civilian chowkidars and sweepers. The said Contingent Bill was returned by the Controller of Defence Accounts (CDA), Meerut with certain objections. Thereupon the appellant submitted a fresh Contingent Bill dated December 25, 1975 for a sum of Rs. 7,029.57. In view of the difference in the amounts mentioned in the two Contingent Bills, the CDA reported the matter to the headquarters for investigation and a Court of Enquiry blamed the appellant for certain lapses.
(3.)The said report of the Court of Enquiry was considered by the General Officer Commanding, M. P., Bihar and Orissa Area, who, on January 7, 1977 recommended that ,severe displeasure' (to be recorded) of the General Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Central Command be awarded to the appellant. The General Officer Commanding-in Chief, Central Command did not agree with the said opinion and by order dated August 26, 1977, directed that disciplinary action be taken against the appellant for the lapses.