“If there is any prima facie evidence, disciplinary action can be taken”
The Madras High Court Bench here has dismissed the petition filed by a Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation (TNSTC) driver challenging a charge memo issued by the General Manager of the TNSTC, Madurai Zone.
The official issued the charge memo to the petitioner on June 12, 2013 for submitting bogus certificates at the time of joining service in 2007.
In his petition, S. Saravanan claimed that his name was registered in the Madurai District Employment Office after verifying his certificates.
He underwent training in the Institute of Road Transport in 1996 and was appointed as a driver on May 29, 2007, the petitioner added. He pointed out that the genuineness of his certificates was verified by the Transport Corporation during his training and the District Employment Office.
The disciplinary proceedings initiated the TNSTC is liable to be set aside on the grounds of delay, he contended.
In his judgement, Justice S. Manikumar observed: “Any appointment secured by submission of bogus certificates is illegal and therefore, the appointing authority can take appropriate steps to ascertain the genuineness of the same. If there is any prima facie evidence, disciplinary action can be taken. There is no period of limitation prescribed under the statutory rule.”
He dismissed the petition citing various Supreme Court judgements which ruled that ‘interference by courts to show cause notice to charge memo at the threshold, would be premature’.
Justice Manikumar further noted that the General Manager of the TNSTC had the competence to issue the charge memo.