The Bombay High Court has asked the Maharashtra Government to reinstate a dismissed police constable,who was acquitted of the charge of murdering his minor son five years ago.
The order was given by a bench of Justices Abhay Oka and Gautam Patel which said constable Sanjay Giridhar Koli alias Tayade was dismissed from service only because of the murder charge faced by him. As he had been acquitted by a Sessions Court,he should be reinstated,the Judges said.
The 44-year-old policeman,posted in adjoining Thane,was dismissed from service in 2008 after he allegedly threw his son from his first floor house. Koli reportedly had a tiff with his wife following which he lost his cool and in a fit of anger allegedly threw his son from the balcony.
Though the constables wife and neighbours had tendered evidence against Koli,a Sessions Court in Thane had acquitted him on the grounds that the statements of witnesses were inconsistent.
After his acquittal,Koli urged the Thane Police Commissioner to reinstate him. However,Kolis plea was rejected. He filed an appeal before the Home Ministry which,too,turned down his application.
Koli,then moved Maharashtra Administrative Tribunal (MAT),which passed an order in his favour in May last year and directed the State to reinstate him with all consequential benefits.
MAT asked the State to treat him as if he was in job all these years and give him promotions and increments.
The State filed an appeal in the High Court which recently rejected its plea and ordered Kolis reinstatement.
The respondents suspension and termination are based only on the respondent being an accused in the criminal case. Having been acquitted in that proceeding,and there being no independent departmental enquiry,it must necessarily follow that the respondents suspension and termination cannot be sustained,noted the Judges.
The bench observed that no independent show- cause notice was ever issued to the constable Giridhar Koli.
We find no reason to interfere with the decision of the Maharashtra Administrative Tribunal which has,on these facts,allowed the respondents application. The petition (of the State) is,therefore,rejected, the bench said while delivering order.