Manipur High Court dismisses state’s petition to review order that quashed service extension of Dr K Rajo
The High Court of Manipur had quashed the contractual engagement of Dr K Rajo, as the director of medical and health services on January 21, 2021.
A single bench of the High Court of Manipur justice A Bimol on Friday dismissed the review petition filed by the state seeking the review of high court judgment passed on January 21, that quashed the extension order of Dr K Rajo, as medical director on contract basis after his retirement.
The petition was filed on the ground that the earlier verdict of the HC is contrary to settled law laid down by the Supreme Court in the cases of “Dokka Samuel Vs Dr. Jacob Lazarus Chelly”; “Parison Devi and Other Vs Sumitri Devi and others”; “State of West Bengal and others Vs Kamal Sengupta and Another”; “Kamlesh Verma Vs Mayawati and others”. Citing the three cases, the petitioner’s counsel argued that engagement of a competent officer, who have retired from service on attaining the age of superannuation, on contract basis for a specified period due to exigency of service and in public interest is permissible, even if the relevant recruitment rule does not provides for such contract engagement.
Moreover, the counsel submitted that interfering with government’s policy taken by the cabinet without challenging the cabinet decisions for engagement the respondent 2 (Dr K Rajo) is also contrary to law laid down by the apex court. As such the order taken by the HC deserves to be set aside, asserted the counsel.
The single bench, however, stated that the rules empower the speaker to appoint the secretary-general by way of promotion, deputation, or contract as may be considered appropriate on each occasion, the apex court has held the speaker can avail the services of a retired experienced officer, as secretary-general on a contract basis. However, the ratio laid down by the apex court on the case is not applicable in the present case, there is no provision under the recruitment rules for the post of director of medical and health services for engagement or appointment of an incumbent had retired from the service on attaining the age of superannuation. Moreover, FR 56 (d) prohibits such engagement, the court said.
Subsequently, the single bench stated that the review petition has failed to point out any error apparent on the face of the record and also the law that claimed to be contrary of the cases, found no ground or jurisdiction for reviewing the judgment passed by the court. Therefore the court has dismissed it as being devoid of merit.
The High Court of Manipur on January 21, 2021, quashed the engagement of Dr K Rajo, as the director of medical and health services, a contract basis. The court has further directed to appoint additional director (NHM) P Shyamsunder as director of medical and health services within two weeks.