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Bombay HC upholds CISF constable’s dismissal for sleeping while guarding thermal power plant

The petitioner claimed that the punishment of dismissal from duty was disproportionate to the gravity of the alleged offence committed by him.

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The court said a sympathetic view could have been taken if the petitioner had made out a case that he slept on duty for reasons beyond his control.

By Vidya : The Bombay High Court has refused to grant any relief to a Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) constable who was dismissed from service for sleeping on duty at the Mauda Thermal Power Plant in Nagpur.

The bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice Abhay Ahuja, while dismissing the plea, observed that Kyatale Ramesh was "a member of a disciplined force entrusted to guard a plant of public importance, was found to be in deep slumber while on night duty. This was not the solitary case of negligence on the part of Ramesh while discharging his official duty."

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Ramesh was dismissed from the CISF on March 22, 2021, for indiscipline and sleeping on duty while posted as a guard at one of the watchtowers at the thermal power plant in Nagpur. His superior had found him sleeping while on night duty and, in the past, warnings were also issued to him for indiscipline and gross negligence towards his duty.

Ramesh had filed an appeal but got no relief in July 2021 and then the revisional authority on March 15, 2022, confirmed the order of the appellate authority.

Ramesh in his petition claimed the punishment of dismissal from duty was disproportionate to the gravity of the alleged offence committed by him.

The bench, however, said the contention was untenable and a sympathetic view could have been taken if the petitioner had made out a case that he slept on duty for reasons beyond his control.

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The bench saw that Ramesh had been punished with seven minor punishments and one major punishment by different disciplinary authorities for various acts of indiscipline by him during his service period. “Hence, the finding that Ramesh was a habitual offender cannot be said to be a perverse finding,” the bench said while refusing relief.