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MP HC disposes Plea to inquire misappropriation of money in the Municipal Corporation, Rewa as no sufficient grounds

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Bhopal Sept 15 (ILNS) The Madhya Pradesh High Court recently, disposed of a Public Interest Litigation (PIL), seeking a direction to the respondents to conduct an inquiry about the misappropriation of money in the Municipal Corporation, Rewa.

The PIL was filed by Ghanshyam Prasad Pandey way back in the year 2011.

When the Petition was originally filed, a prayer was made that the state government be directed to conduct an inquiry about the illegal appointments and promotions of the employees/officers of the Municipal Corporation, Rewa and cancel the same. However, during the pendency of the PIL , the Petitioner sought to amend the Petition and the application for amendment was allowed by order dated July 25, 2011.

The said prayer was deleted and a new prayer was incorporated seeking a direction to the respondents to conduct an inquiry about the misappropriation of money in the Municipal Corporation, Rewa to the tune of Rs.4,42,33,200/- and recovery of the same be made from the said persons.

The Jabalpur Division Bench of Chief Justice Mohammad Rafiq and Justice Vijay Kumar Shukla after going through the memorandum of the Petition noted that as per the report of the Municipal Corporation, Rewa, the Corporation has suffered losses of the aforementioned amount.

It was alleged that some of the appointments were made without the existence of the posts and without following the procedure. Certain employees were dismissed from service and were ultimately reinstated in service thus, causing loss to the State Exchequer.

The Bench further noted that the Petitioner has not laid down the complete foundation for directing inquiry into the alleged loss except an audit report. On that basis, the petitioner sought to contend that these persons were wrongly paid the amount, which is liable to be recovered and therefore, an inquiry ought to be made. But the petitioner, during the pendency of the writ petition, got deleted the original prayer about the inquiry into the nature of appointment/promotion of various employees, ostensibly, because none of the affected employees were impleaded as parties. The matter has remained pending for the past one decade, observed the Bench.

The respondents have filed a reply to the writ petition raising objection about the non-impleadment of any of the named employees, therefore, the allegations of the petitioner are denied.

It is stated that different Commissioners have remained posted in the Municipal Corporation, Rewa from time to time and therefore, the allegation of irregularities only against two of them may not be acceptable. The respondents, however, denied that any illegal appointment was made. The respondents in their reply have made reference to the interim orders passed by this Court in W.P. No.4931/2006 (Arun Kumar Singh Vs. State of M.P. & Another) on 05.04.2006 and W.P. No.95/2002 (B.K. Singh Parihar Vs. State of M.P. & Another) dated 09.02.2010 and also ordered dated 25.11.2020.

“Having regard to the facts of the case, since we are not having sufficient material to hold that the appointments/promotions were not legal. However, considering that no reply has been filed by the State Government, we set the petitioner at liberty to approach the State Government, Urban Administration and Development Department, Vallabh Bhawan, Bhopal (M.P.), with all his allegations for examining them in accordance with law,” the order reads./ILNS/SS/SNG

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