The Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh High Court has upheld the termination of a CRPF Constable stating that his inability to justify the six-year delay in challenging his termination order raises concerns about his efficiency to serve in a disciplined force.
A single bench of Justice Moksha Kazmi Khajuria observed,
“The petitioner was supposed to challenge the termination order of 2001 at least after the same was provided to him by this court; the petitioner slept over the matter, remained in deep slumber’s for about six years and filed this petition on the basis of the documents without any number, date or receipt…The doctrine of delay and latches is not to be taken so lightly when the petitioner has miserably failed to explain as to why he could not approach this Court after the termination order was furnished to him.“
The Disciplinary Authority had declared the petitioner a “deserter” after leave overstay and declared that he was unfit to be retained in the disciplined force.
The petitioner submitted that he took a 60-day leave due to his mother’s illness, but during this period, his mother and wife passed away, resulting in significant emotional distress for him leading to adverse psychiatric symptoms requiring treatment. He further submitted that the impugned order was passed ex-parte, without giving him an opportunity to be heard or to cross-examine any witnesses according to Rule 27 of the CRPF Rules, 1955.
The respondents contested the maintainability of the plea citing the unexplained delay on part of the petitioner in approaching the Court.
Adjudicating upon the matter, Justice Kazmi noted that the petitioner has stated that 60 days leave was granted in his favour from 12.07.2000 to 09.09.2000, but he has not referred anywhere to the date of death of his wife and mother.
The court further noted that as per petitioner, he got to know about the termination order of 2001 only in the year 2011 through a court order. It said, “Even if it is presumed that the petitioner was having psychiatric issues since 2001 till 2011…he still waited for six years till 2017 to approach this court by way of filing this petition”, the bench pointed.
It thus held that the respondents have rightly stated in the impugned order that the petitioner is not fit to be retained in the disciplined force like CRPF.
Case Title: Nissar Ahmad Shah Vs Union of India & Ors.
Citation: 2023 LiveLaw (JKL) 120
Counsel For Petitioner: Mr Ateeb Kanth
Counsel For Respondent: Mr Tahir Shamsi DGSI
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