Patna High Court dismisses PIL seeking inquiry into the illegalities committed by child development project officer

The Patna High Court imposed a Cost of  Rs. 5,000/-  on the Petitioner and dismissed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed seeking for an inquiry into the illegalities committed by the 8th respondent (person who was holding the post of Child Development Project Officer, Sarmera, Nalanda between 2014 to 2018).

The Division Bench of Chief Justice K. Vinod Chandran  and Justice Harish Kumar noted that it is not clear as to where she is posted now nor has she been impleaded in the personal capacity. 

The Court finds the  petition filed in such a manner without impleading the party against whom the complaint is raised, to be totally misconceived.

The counter affidavit refers to the various allegations raised against the Child Development Project Officer, who is also named in the counter affidavit. In fact, the same was raised by the petitioner before the District Public Grievance Cell, Nalanda by way of filing a complaint in March 2018. The matter was then transferred to The District Programme Officer, Nalanda for inquiry. The District Public Grievance Cell, Nalanda considered the report and found that there is no merit in the allegations raised and that the accusations have not been proved in the inquiry. The petitioner’s complaint was dismissed by the The District Programme Officer, Nalanda in October 2018.  

An appeal was filed by the petitioner before The Divisional Commissioner, Patna Division, which was also disposed of in December 2018. In appeal, the Appellate Authority only found that it transpires that procedural error had occurred in the hiring of private vehicles and the officer was directed to exercise more care and caution in future. Again, the petitioner had raised the issue before the Lokayukta, Bihar, which was also rejected.   

The various orders are produced before the High Court . When an inquiry was conducted it was found by the District Public Grievance Cell, Nalanda and the Appellate Authority that there was nothing more than procedural irregularities; there was absolutely no necessity to file the above petition.  As the Court noted that the  petition has also been filed without impleading the person against whom allegations are raised. “The petition, hence, is found to be misconceived, misplaced and an abuse of process of court.”

 “We dismiss the writ petition imposing a cost of Rs. 5,000/- on the petitioner to be recovered by the Bihar State Legal Services Authority, as amount due on land revenue”, the order reads.

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