Delhi HC reserves order on plea of Bengal’s ex-CS Alapan Bandyopadhyay

The Delhi High Court on Friday reserved the order on the plea filed by former West Bengal Chief Secretary Alapan Bandyopadhyay challenging the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) Principal Bench order which transferred his case concerning disciplinary proceedings initiated by the Centre from West Bengal to the national capital.

The former civil servant Bandyopadhyay came into the limelight when he did not attend a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Kolkata in the wake of cyclone Yaas in May last year.

Hearing the submissions, the division bench presided over by Chief Justice D.N. Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh asked the parties to file their written submission by Saturday.

During the course of the hearing, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the Centre, pointed out the violation of the former CS, saying that the CAT has an exclusive power for transferring the case.

In the last hearing, Alapan Bandyopadhyay’s counsel submitted that the CAT order was passed in complete violation of the principles of natural justice, equity, and fair play. The petitioner further submitted he was not even granted a right to file its written objections to the Transfer Petition.

Bandyopadhyay was issued a show-cause notice under the Disaster Management Act following the incident. The bureaucrat, however, resigned from service, but was subjected to disciplinary proceedings initiated by the Centre.

He then approached the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) in Kolkata against these proceedings. Following this, the CAT’s Principal Bench in Delhi transferred the case to the national capital.

Bandyopadhyay then moved the High Court against CAT, New Delhi order. The High court on October 29, took strong objection to the manner in which the CAT Principal Bench favoured the Central government in transferring Bandyopadhyay’s case to itself and quashed CAT’s order. Thereafter, the Centre approached the apex court against the High Court order.

The apex court said that the Calcutta High Court did not have the jurisdiction to decide the plea of Bandyopadhyay. It also granted liberty to Bandyopadhyay to approach the jurisdictional High Court (Delhi) to challenge the order of the CAT Principal.

20220225-141402

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