CAT quashes order rejecting promotion, directs reconsideration

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In a significant order, a Bench of Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) at Chandigarh comprising Sanjeev Kaushik (Member Judicial) and P Gopinath (Member Administrative) has quashed Government Order No.355-FST of 2012 dated September 12, 2012 whereby State Forest Department had rejected the case of IFS officer Ruplal Bharti, the then Chief Wildlife Warden J&K and Former Member PSC for his promotion to the level of Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (PCCF).

After hearing Advocate Sheikh Shakeel Ahmed appearing for the petitioner whereas Advocate Rohit Seth appearing for the State of J&K and Senior Central Government Standing Counsel Ram Lal Gupta appearing for the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests, a Bench of CAT while allowing the review petition filed by former PSC member Ruplal Bharti directed the State of J&K to accord reconsideration to the case of the petitioner for his promotion to the level of PCCF by passing a speaking /reasoned order in terms of Rule 4(2) of IFS Cadre Rules, 1966.

Earlier, Advocate Ahmed submitted that the petitioner has rendered requisite 30 years service in IFS Cadre as on 01.01.2006 and had made several representations to the Government of J&K for his promotion to the next higher post of the PCCF.

The petitioner was inducted as Member of the J&K Public Service Commission on 29.05.2006 and at that time he was serving as Additional PCCF/Chief Wildlife Warden J&K and had more than one year service in IFS cadre. “State Government under Rule 4(2) of IFS Cadre Rules, 1966 is fully competent to create a supernumerary post for according the pay scale of PCCF in favour of the petitioner”, Advocate Ahmed said.

He further submitted that an error has crept in the judgment dated February 16, 2018 passed by a Bench of CAT Chandigarh then headed by Justice MS Sullar (Member Judicial) since retired and Parveen Mahajan (Member Administrative) whereby instead of Govt. Order No.355-FST of 2012 dated September 12, 2012 the CAT had quashed Communication No.FST/Ser/ 304/78-199-IFS-R-I dated March, 3, 2010 and the instant review petition is seeking correction of the order so that Govt. Order No.355-FST of 2012 dated September 12, 2012 is quashed whereby plea of the petitioner for his promotion to the level of PCCF had been rejected by the J&K Government.

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