SRINAGAR The J&K High Court on Tuesday directed Commissioner Secretary, H&ME department, to submit an affidavit within one week, indicating as to how and in what manner its judgment quashing cabinet order regarding appointment of Saima Rashid and leaving out Javid Chowdhary as Principal of Government Medical College Srinagar.
A Division Bench of Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey and Justice Tashi Rabstan observed that the judgment has been violated as no interim arrangement has been made till date.
The court directed the Commissioner Secretary to submit an affidavit within one week indicating as to how and in what manner the judgment has been implemented or appear personally before the court.
Dr. Javed Chowdhry had filed a contempt proceedings against the authorities for violation of the judgment and appearing in person today, he submitted that the Government as per the judgment passed on February was obliged to make interim arrangement for the post in question with four weeks from the date of receipt of judgment and remove the present incumbent as her appointment has been quashed by the court.
Observing that arbitrariness is antithetic to equality, the court had last month quashed an order by the cabinet of erstwhile PDP-BJP government with Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti in the chair, appointing Saima Rashid and leaving out Javid Chowdhary as Principal GMC Srinagar.
We are constrained to intervene in the matter and therefore hold the Cabinet Decision and consequential Government order, impugned in the writ petition, bad in the eye of law and not sustainable, the court said while allowing an appeal filed by senior-most professor Javid Chowdhary, challenging the appointment of Saima Rashid as the principal of the medical college.
We have examined the whole record carefully and do not find any reason worth the name that has been recorded by the Cabinet in any corner of the contemporaneous record. The two-line decision to appoint respondent no.6 (Dr Saima Rashid) cannot be justified on any count, particularly when the Establishment-cum-Selection Committee, appointed by it, had on evaluation of whole record, recommended the appellant (Javid Chowdhary) for appointment as Principal, GMC, Srinagar, the court had said.
The writ petition (SWP no.894/2017) is allowed and Cabinet Decision no.50/04/2017 dated 28th April 2017 and Government Order no.252-HME of 2017 dated 8th May 2017, impugned in the writ petition, are quashed, the court with a direction to the authorities to place the whole material, consisting of minutes of the decision of the Establishment-cum-Selection Committee, before the Cabinet/State Administrative Council (SAC), as the case may be, for its reconsideration.
Let the Cabinet/SAC take appropriate decision as may be warranted in light of the observations made by us herein above, within a period of four weeks from the date certified copy of this order becomes available to the respondents.
Till such decision was taken by the Cabinet/SAC, the court had said it shall be open to the Government to make the incharge or temporary arrangement to run the day to day affairs of the office of the Principal, Government Medical College Srinagar.
The court reiterated that it was not for a minute holding or suggesting that the Cabinet could not have taken a decision independent of the recommendations of the Establishment-cum-Selection Committee, but, in doing so, it was constitutionally obliged to record its reasons for dissent with the recommendations of the Committee and for taking a decision independently on the basis of record placed before it.
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