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Uttam Kumar Pandey Vs. State of Chhattisgarh and Ors. - (High Court of Chhattisgarh) (14 May 2019)

For issuance of writ of quo warranto, appointment has to be contrary to statutory rules



The Petitioner, himself a lawyer, would seek quashment of the appointment of Respondent No. 3 on the post of Deputy Advocate General by issuance of writ of quo warranto. Challenge to the appointment of Respondent No. 3 is based on the ground that, at the time when Respondent No. 3 was elected and working as Joint Secretary of the High Court Bar Association, he displaced and removed the name plates of the advocates, which they have put over the tables/chairs in the common hall of the Advocate Chambers.

When Respondent No. 3 was committing this wrongful action, the Petitioner protested upon which the said Respondent used his muscle power and beat the Petitioner with the help of other advocates, at the same time using filthy abuses and criminally intimidating him. On Petitioner's report, Crime was registered by the concerned police for offence under Sections 294, 506, 323/34 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 (IPC) and the trial is pending against him before the Judicial Magistrate.

On Respondent No. 3 being appointed as Deputy Advocate General vide State Government's order, the Petitioner submitted a representation to the Advocate General and the Secretary, Law and Legislative Affairs Department, however, no action has been taken. It is argued that, Respondent No. 3 lacks institutional integrity attached to the office of Deputy Advocate General and appointment has been made without effective consultation with the Advocate General.

It is settled law that, for issuance of writ of quo warranto, the High Court has to satisfy that the appointment is contrary to the statutory rules. In view of this settled legal position, it was necessary for the Petitioner to place on record the statutory rules or even circulars providing statutory norms for appointment as Deputy Advocate General. The power of judicial review, even when it is very restricting, cannot be denied to be exercised without adverting to the relevant fact.

It is noticed that offences allegedly committed by Respondent No. 3 is only under Sections 294, 506 and 323/34 of the IPC. The incident happened when he was Joint Secretary of the High Court Bar Association. It is not a case of cheating, fraud or rape. Quashing appointment on this ground therefore does not appear to be proper. Except one criminal case for an incident which had happened in the Bar Room, no other fact or proceeding in respect of integrity of Respondent No. 3 has been brought to the notice of this Court. Petition dismissed.


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