no employee shall be confined to prolonged periods of suspension. Any such prolonged suspension without there being adequate justification for doing so is likely to cause loss of productivity to the organization. It will also harden the individual and the joints would later on become rickety should he get an opportunity to get reinstated. Further, every model employer was called upon to pay substantial portion of the wages towards subsistence allowance during the period of suspension. In return, the employer cannot extract any services from such an employee. In other words, while keeping the employee away from the place of work, the employer will be saddled with the additional financial burden of paying the substantial portion of wages earned by him as monthly subsistence allowance. Particularly those who are involved in criminal cases, they have very little control over the progress achieved in a criminal Court. Depending upon the density of the docket, the criminal cases are disposed of. Some times, the prosecution pursues the matters vigorously, like completing the investigation in quick time and getting ready. More often than not, the prosecution does not evince any interest in speedy disposal of cases where the evidence does not come forth in good volumes and quality. Sometimes the investigation process takes long time to accomplish the task and file a charge-sheet describing the involvement of each of the accused persons. These are all imponderable factors over which the accused persons can hardly have any legitimate control. Therefore, every model employer would reconsider reengaging the employee, who was confined to suspension earlier, no sooner a charge-sheet is filed and the liberty of the employee concerned is not otherwise curtailed by the criminal Court. Sometimes reinstating an employee in public employment may become counter-productive. It may project the employer in poor light in the public view. Therefore, an appropriate balance has to be struck between the two ends of the rainbow. It is therefore, for the 2nd respondent to secure appropriate information from the investigating agency and if he finds delay, in any manner, in completion of the investigation or filing of the charge sheet or proceeding with the prosecution in the criminal Court, reinstatement back to service, perhaps, will be an appropriate course to be adopted. That would save the employer from the further obligation of making substitute arrangements in place of the employee confined to suspension and would also obviate the necessity to pay additionally for the wages of the substitute. Therefore, the 2nd respondent will bear in mind all these factors and also the fact that the First Information Report does not name the petitioner and he was only shown as Accused No. 12, but not as the principal accused, and take an appropriate decision as to whether it would be desirable to reinstate him back to service. Let this exercise be completed as expeditiously as is possible, preferably within a period of three months from the date of receipt of a copy of this order.

THE HONBLE SRI JUSTICE NOOTY RAMAMOHANA RAO            

W.P. No. 7499 of 2015

23-03-2015

Gaddam Biksham.Petitioner  

Telangana State Power Generation Corporation Ltd.,  Hyderabad &
another..Respondents

Counsel for the petitioner :  Dr. K. Satyanarayana Rao

Counsel for the Respondents: Sri C. Raghu, Standing Counsel

<GIST:

>HEAD NOTE:  

? Cases referred
1.      2001 (5) ALD 290


THE HONBLE SRI JUSTICE NOOTY RAMAMOHANA RAO            
WRIT PETITION No. 7499 OF 2015  
O R D E R:
      The petitioner herein, who was employed as a Junior Plant
Attendant with Kothagudem Thermal Power Station (KTPS), has  
been placed under suspension by the Chief Engineer of KTPS at
Paloncha for his involvement in Crime No. 66 of 2014 which was
registered for the offences under Sections 307, 457 and 380 read
with Section 149 of the Indian Penal Code.
      Heard learned counsel for the petitioner
Dr. K. Satyanarayana Rao and Sri C. Raghu, learned Standing
Counsel, who has accepted notice on behalf of the respondents.
      It is contended by Dr. Satyanarayana Rao that the petitioner
has been unnecessarily implicated in the crime, at the first
instance by the local police, for various other reasons, in spite of
the police knowing that the petitioner is no way concerned with the
crime.  Be that as it may, the learned counsel would further
contend that the petitioner has not exhibited any conduct, which is
even slightly blameworthy, while he was performing his duties.
Admittedly, the crime has taken place near about some temple in a
neighbouring area.  Even the First Information Report did not
name the petitioner.  He was shown as Accused No. 12 amongst 13  
accused persons by the police.  The learned counsel therefore,
would contend that placing the petitioner under suspension, for no
fault of his and only on the ground that the police have registered
a crime against him, is wholly unjust.  The learned counsel has
placed reliance upon a judgment rendered by a Division Bench of
this Court in P. Rajender v. Union of India  as well as  the
judgment rendered by a learned Single Judge in Writ Petition No.
10583 of 1999 on 18.07.2005 which judgment has been approved
by a Division Bench when appealed against in Writ Appeal No.
2027 of 2005 on 20.10.2005.  The learned counsel would also urge
that consistently this Court has been directing the respondent
public authorities to reinstate the employees placed under
suspension for their involvement in crimes, which have taken place
outside the arena of employment.
      As a matter of rule of thumb, it cannot be said that an
employee in public employment cannot be placed under
suspension for the alleged involvement in a crime, which had
taken place outside the arena of employment.  All employees of the
public employment are regulated by an approved code of conduct.
Concept of public employment stipulates that such an employee is
employed round the clock and on all the days through out the
year.  Therefore, every person, who is in public employment, is
required to bear a decent and appropriate conduct not only while
he performs duty but even outside and beyond the office hours as
well.  Exhibiting indecent conduct or involvement in offences,
which carry moral turpitude, is incompatible with the spirit and
status of the public employment.  Those in public employment
carry with them a status not merely arising out of the contractual
obligations.  It is dehors and independent thereof.  Therefore, all
such persons are required to bear an appropriate and decent
conduct through out.  It will also be appropriate to notice that the
government servants are required to bear the same, even through
their retired life for them would secure monthly pension support
from the State.  Therefore, I am not in agreement with the view
point canvassed by Dr. Satyanarayana that involvement in any
crime outside the arena of employment by a public servant cannot
be viewed with any disfavour and shall not result in placing such
an employee under suspension at all.
      However, it has been repeatedly impressed upon all public
employers by this Court as well as the various other High Courts
and the Supreme Court that no employee shall be confined to
prolonged periods of suspension.  Any such prolonged suspension 
without there being adequate justification for doing so is likely to
cause loss of productivity to the organization.  It will also harden
the individual and the joints would later on become rickety should
he get an opportunity to get reinstated.
      Further, every model employer was called upon to pay
substantial portion of the wages towards subsistence allowance
during the period of suspension.  In return, the employer cannot
extract any services from such an employee.  In other words, while
keeping the employee away from the place of work, the employer 
will be saddled with the additional financial burden of paying the
substantial portion of wages earned by him as monthly
subsistence allowance.  Particularly those who are involved in
criminal cases, they have very little control over the progress
achieved in a criminal Court.  Depending upon the density of the
docket, the criminal cases are disposed of.  Some times, the
prosecution pursues the matters vigorously, like completing the
investigation in quick time and getting ready.  More often than not,
the prosecution does not evince any interest in speedy disposal of
cases where the evidence does not come forth in good volumes and 
quality.  Sometimes the investigation process takes long time to
accomplish the task and file a charge-sheet describing the
involvement of each of the accused persons.  These are all
imponderable factors over which the accused persons can hardly
have any legitimate control.  Therefore, every model employer
would reconsider reengaging the employee, who was confined to 
suspension earlier, no sooner a charge-sheet is filed and the liberty
of the employee concerned is not otherwise curtailed by the
criminal Court. Sometimes reinstating an employee in public
employment may become counter-productive.  It may project the 
employer in poor light in the public view.  Therefore, an
appropriate balance has to be struck between the two ends of the
rainbow.
      It is therefore, for the 2nd respondent to secure appropriate
information from the investigating agency and if he finds delay, in
any manner, in completion of the investigation or filing of the
charge sheet or proceeding with the prosecution in the criminal
Court, reinstatement back to service, perhaps, will be an
appropriate course to be adopted.  That would save the employer
from the further obligation of making substitute arrangements in
place of the employee confined to suspension and would also
obviate the necessity to pay additionally for the wages of the
substitute.  Therefore, the 2nd respondent will bear in mind all
these factors and also the fact that the First Information Report
does not name the petitioner and he was only shown as Accused  
No. 12, but not as the principal accused, and take an appropriate
decision as to whether it would be desirable to reinstate him back
to service.  Let this exercise be completed as expeditiously as is
possible, preferably within a period of three months from the date
of receipt of a copy of this order.
      With this, the Writ Petition stands disposed of. No costs.
          Consequently, the miscellaneous applications, if any shall
also stand disposed of.
-----------------------------------------
NOOTY RAMAMOHANA RAO, J        
23rd March  2015 

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