The special appeal has arisen from a judgment and order of the learned Single Judge of this Court dated 17 November 2014. While allowing the writ petition under Article 226 of the Constitution, the learned Single Judge set aside an order dated 16 June 2014 issued by the Commandant of the Fourth Battalion of the PAC at Allahabad dismissing the respondent from service under Rule 4 of the Uttar Pradesh Police Officers of the Subordinate Ranks Rules, 19911. The punishment was imposed upon the respondent after a regular departmental inquiry into a charge of misconduct. The basis on which the learned Single Judge has allowed the writ petition is that the respondent being a Group-D employee in the police department would not, in the view of the learned Single Judge, be governed by the Rules of 1991 applicable to police officers of the subordinate ranks and that the disciplinary proceedings would be governed by the rules framed by the Governor under Article 309 of the Constitution namely the Uttar Pradesh Government Servant Rules, 19992.
The respondent was appointed on the post of a peon, which is a Group-D post under the Dying-in-Harness Rules, 1974 on 20 May 2010. On 5 June 2013, a charge-sheet was issued to him under rule 14 (1) of the Rules of 1991 on the ground of continuous absence with effect from 21 November 2011. The respondent submitted his reply on 22 June 2013 and 25 June 2013. A disciplinary inquiry was initiated in the course of which the inquiry officer submitted his report on 15 March 2014. Thereafter, a notice to show cause was issued by the Commandant of the Fourth Battalion of the PAC on 16 April 2014 calling upon him to show cause as to why he should not be dismissed from service under rule 4 (1) (a) of the Rules of 1991. The respondent submitted his reply to the notice to show cause on 4 May 2014. An order of dismissal was passed on 16 June 2014. The respondent challenged the order in writ proceedings under Article 226 of the Constitution.
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The learned Single Judge allowed the petition on the ground that the services of the respondent were governed not by the Rules of 1991 but by the Rules of 1999 applicable to the government servants. In taking this view, the learned Single Judge relied upon a decision of a Division Bench of this Court in Krishna Murari vs. State of U.P. and others3, decided on 10 April 2012. While allowing the writ petition and setting aside the order of dismissal, the learned Single Judge granted liberty to the appellants to proceed with the departmental proceedings against the respondent under the Rules of 1999 from the stage of the issuance of the charge-sheet. A direction was issued to restore the respondent to the status he was occupying when the charge-sheet was served together with consequential benefits including reinstatement.
The issue which has been raised before the Court essentially turns upon the interpretation of the rules which have been framed by the Governor under Article 309 of the Constitution on the one hand and the rules framed under the Police Act, 18614 on the other hand which are applicable to members of the police force. Before we proceed to consider the two sets of rules, a brief reference to the provisions of the Police Act would be in order.
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