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krishnamoorthy (Government servant)     16 July 2008

Reinstatement after acquittal


     One of my friend working in Central Government was booked by CBI under Anti corruption Act and convicted in a criminal court.  On the basis of criminal conviction, he was dismissed from the government service.  On Appeal, Hon'ble High Court acquitted him on merit.   Since the conviction order of lower court was set aside, Government Servant approached the Head of the Department for re-instatement. 

The Head of the Department, instead of reinstating him, issued Show Cause Notice to reject his request of reinstatement on the grounds that CBI is going to file an SLP before Supreme Court.

As on date, the appeal period against HC order is over. There is no stay agaisnt HC order. The Coviction is set aside and the officer is innocent before law. Merely prefering appeal with Higher forum will not  stop reinstatement. 

In this regard, I would like to know whether the action of Head of Department is amounting to Contempt of Court?  Whether the action of Head of the Department is against the provisions of Article 311(2)(a)?  Can anyone refer any relvant SC/HC ruling  to claim reinstatement with backwages immediately.    



 8 Replies

H. S. Thukral (Lawyer)     16 July 2008

when there is a criminal case filed on a set of circumstances and adomestic inquiry/ disciplinary proceedings are also initiated on exactly same set of circumstances, it is prudent that the disciplinary proceedings should be stayed but once a deliquent employee is acquitted in court of law it is not binding upon the department to absolve the employee of the charges. It can still hold a departmental inquiry but the factor of discharge in criminal case will be a point to consider in the proceedings. In your case there was no discilinary proceedigns conducted and your friend was dismissed on the basis of conviction in the criminal court which has been set aside . The department is bound to reinstate him in the job with full back wages and continuity of service. However if the department desires so it can initiate another departmental proceedings. But earlier order of dismissal san inquiry has been vitiated. 

You can file a writ petition in the High Court with an appropriate prayer . 

I will suggest  further reading of judgment of SC 

Capt. M Paul Anthony vs . Bharat Gold Mines and Other 

1999(1) LLJ 1094

In the cirucmstances explained above, I am of the opinion that it is not a contempt of court.

krishnamoorthy (Government servant)     17 July 2008

Thank you sir for your reply.
But my question is not regarding Disciplinary proceedings. The Department issued Show Cause Notice to reject the prayer of reinstatement, by merely stating that CBI is going to file an SLP before Supreme Court in the Criminal case. As the Criminal case has not reached its finality in the judicial forum. it is not mandatory for the Department to reinstate the officer on the basis of High Court's acquittal order. In this regard only, I refered violation of Article 311(2)(a). I require SC/HC rulings on this aspect to claim reinstatement.
After reinstatement, let the Department initiate Disciplinary proceedings against the officer, if required.
Thank you again sir.

Milijnd Kumar Dange (Conculting)     23 October 2008

Dear KM,

I have myself sufferred as my case is also similar. In my case the discplinary proceedings have been resumed after 13 years since the first dept memo was issued and even after ACQUITTAL in the CBI case. I have approached the High Court and courts loathe to interfere and are generally biased towards the establishment. In my case even the charges and the evidence are exactly similar still courts are not of any help.

There are quite a few citations wherein it has been decided that when charges are similar dept proceedings should not be held. In fact as per CVC guidelines also it cannot be held. But unfortunately who follows them when Courts sit in Ivory towers. the bad part is that The management is the new Zamidars of this country.

I have been fighting the management for the last 15 years and I continue to do so.

so all the best to the person

Girish (Service)     15 July 2009

Dear friends,

Read both the messages.  I am also in a similar situation.  I have learned that the department has approached the CBI for their permission for reinstatement.  Does anybody know if such instructions exist. 

suresh babu (personal)     27 January 2010

dear friends,

     I am also in the same plight.I have been acquited by the AP high court and there was no dept enquiry against me.I had been placed under compulsory retirement and my application is pending with the dept head.i wish share my thoughts and feelings with others who are suffering like me.My contact no is 09985160930.

Mr Krishnamoorthy i wish to talk to you.pl call me.

Sudhir Kumar, Advocate (Advocate)     21 November 2011

Dear Mr Krishnamoorthy,

There is no contempt of court as the facts given by you disclose that there is no court ordr for reinstatement. Mt Thukral hs rightly pointed out and Mr Dange has mnarrated experience that disciplinary action can be considered even after acquittal.

tarun (Advocate)     16 February 2012

Reinstatemnt orders have to be passed by the competent authority only after the attainment of finality of High court's order. 

As the High court has passed orders in Appeal in Criminal case- it is not a service matter.

the matter regarding the reinstatement /wages etc is service matter and  not passing order of reinstatement wouldnot expose the competent authority to face any contempt charges.

only if specific order of reinstatement with or without wages is passed by Service law tribunal/high court  or in writ jurisidiction then competent authority has to implement it in all circumstances and has to face contempt if not followed it.

Avdhesh Upadhyay   25 February 2018

if an employeer has filed a criminal case against his employee and employee was dismissed from service by expartee departmental enquiry and the employee has been acquitted from similar sets of charges both in criminal and departmental enquiry. Reinstatement with backwages will be applicable. Kindly clear with the judgements of Apex Court.

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