Read Order: Parminder Kumar v. State of Punjab and others
Chandigarh, September 28, 2021: The Punjab and Haryana High Court has held that the Appellate Authority should not have rejected the appeal on the ground that it was time barred, specially keeping in view the fact that there was only a nominal delay. It was not a case where there was inordinate delay and the petitioner was negligent and had slept over his rights.
In this matter, the petitioner had filed the writ petition under Article 226/227 of the Constitution of India challenging the order dated February 4,2021, whereby forfeiture of one year’s service for annual increments had been imposed temporarily. The challenge was also raised to the order of the Appellate Authority dated June 23,2021, whereby his appeal was dismissed on the ground that it was time barred under Rule 16.30 (2) of the Punjab Police Rules.
The ground for punishment was that the petitioner had not informed the authorities regarding the criminal case lodged by his wife by way of an FIR.
It was further the case of the petitioner that on account of the said punishment his further chance for being sent to the Lower School Course was being effected and, therefore, his promotional avenues were getting curtailed.
The Bench of Justice G.S.Sandhawalia opined that it is settled principle that the dispute should be adjudicated on merits rather than dismissing the appeal on technical grounds of being time barred. Since it was filed on March 8,2021 and, therefore, there was only a nominal delay and even if benefit of applying for the certified copy was granted, the same would not even be time barred against the order dated February 4,2021.
Noting that it was not a case where there was inordinate delay and the petitioner was negligent and had slept over his rights, the Bench observed that the Appellate Authority should not have rejected the appeal on the ground that it was time barred, specially keeping in view the fact that there was only a nominal delay.
It was further pointed out that the matter has been amicably settled with the wife and even criminal proceedings have been quashed vide order dated January 15,2021,passed in CRM-M-29095-2020, added the Bench.
Quashing the order dated June 23,2021,the Court issued directions to the respondent to hear the appeal on merits and decided the same expeditiously within a period of one month.