MOTIHARI: High court Patna directed state government to take disciplinary action against Sikrahana Sub-Divisional officer Gyan Prakash for his deliberate decision of cancelling a licence of fair price(PDS) dealer Sikander Ram, son of Ramdeo Ram, village Athmuhan under Bankatwa Block in 2020.
Hearing a civil writ petition, High court directed Chief Secratry, state government of Bihar to innitiate action against Sikrahana sub-divisional officer for ‘irresponsible manner’ in which latter passed an order of cancelling a license of Public distribution system. The court also directed the government to issue specific guidelines for proper exercise of power by the authorities so as to minimize the litigation in high court that is already over burdened with dockets.
While quashing the order dated April 16, 2020, Justice Chakaradhari Sharan Singh took strong exception against SDO’s modus- operadi in exercising his power- observing that in cancelling the fair price shop ‘there is irresistible’ conclusion that the authorities has acted in haste, court observed.
“To add to the injuries, SDO issued show cause on April, 2020, this court would also take notice of the fact that on the same day i,e April 16,2020 the order cancelling the petitioner’s license has also been issued”, court observed.
The court holds that the order of the Sub divisional officer dated April 16, 2020 cancelling the license is clearly unsustainable as being violative of the principal of natural justice. The order is not in accordance with the procedure prescribed in Statute. SDO while asking the petitioner to submit his response to show-cause notice on the date of issuance of notice itself coupled with passing of the order on the same date in utter haste, in court opinion it is wholly arbitrary and unreasonable, the court found.
Detailing the case, petitioner’s advocate Vikash Kumar Pankaj said that SDO lodged a case against the fair price shop owner and sent him to jail. His order of cancelling his license was challenged before court and finally court quashed SDO order observing that it was taken in utter haste without going through proper procedures. “ SDO’s unreasonable decision landed my clients in jail”, he added.
To take version calls made on the official contact number of Sikrahana SDO Gyan Prakash were left unattended. Later on SDO called back with his version that after going through the court order they will move to the revision bench as Sikander Ram himself had admitted the all allegations of defalcation leveled against him.