CM’s approval to committee’s decision renders it impliedly valid: Uttarakhand High Court

A committee’s decision which has been approved by the Chief Minister of the state shall implicitly be valid. If a recommendation is made by the chief minister itself, the decision of the committee, taking a decision under sub-section (1) of Section 27 of the Transfer Act shall be justified. This assertion was made by the Uttarakhand High Court presided by J. Sharad Kumar Sharma in the case of Dr. Sandhya Raj vs. State of Uttarakhand & othrs [WRIT PETITION (S/B) No. 51 of 2021].

The petitioner, in the present writ petition, has given a challenge to the impugned order of transfer, passed by respondent, whereby her services of the petitioner, which she was discharging, as an Incharge Medical Officer, E.S.I. Dispensary, Jaspur, District Udham Singh Nagar, have been sought to be transferred from the said place of posting to Kotdwar, District Pauri Garhwal. The impugned order of transfer, had been passed by making a reference to the provisions contained under Section 27 by the Secretary, Labour Department, to the State of Uttarakhand, as well as Section 18(4) of the Transfer Act. Further, the petitioner contended that the enquiry did not reflect any serious misconduct. The learned Senior Counsel for the petitioner argued the writ petition under the pretext that, the impugned order of transfer, where it makes a reference to Section 27, it does not make a reference to the compliance of Section 27(2), which contemplates a ratification/approval of the decision, which had been taken by the Committee, which is provided under Section 27(1) of the Act. The Additional Chief Standing Counsel, was granted time to complete his instructions and make his statement about the compliance of Section 27(2) of the Act.

The Uttarakhand High Court held, “A challenge to the subsequent recommendation was made by a next superior authority i.e. none other than the Chief Minister of the State, would have its automatic implication that the decision of the Committee, thus, constituted was justified and is not the subject matter of the challenge in the present writ petition.” The honorable court further held, “For the aforesaid reasons and coupled with the fact that the information supplied by the learned Additional Chief Standing Counsel for the State today that the approval of the decision of the Committee, taking a decision under sub-section (1) of Section 27, has been granted by the Chief Minister, I do not find any apparent error in the order of transfer.”

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