The Karnataka High Court on Friday said Chief Ministers should not waste their time transferring officials, that too during the middle of the year, merely because of the recommendation of members of the State legislature.
A Division Bench comprising Justice N. Kumar and Justice B. Manohar passed the order while quashing the transfer of an Assistant Director of Agriculture on Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar’s order, which was issued following a recommendation made by MLC K.R. Mallikarjunapppa.
The court allowed a petition filed by D. Huchaiah, who was transferred from the post of Assistant Director of Agriculture (Watershed Development Department), Chamarajanagar, in January to accommodate K.S. Mohan Das, whom the MLC had recommended for the post.
The Karnataka Administrative Tribunal (KAT), however, did not interfere in the transfer as the petitioner had already completed three years in the post as per the government’s norm.
The High Court said the midyear transfer of officer could be done in public interest and for administrative reason, and certainly not for posting an officer of the choice an MLC.
While declaring the untimely transfer as illegal, the court said Chief Ministers should not waste their time acting on recommendations for transfers that are not in public interest and that too during midyear.