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Kunhikannan Vs. Adjutant General and anr. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCriminal
CourtKerala High Court
Decided On
Judge
Reported in1982CriLJ306
AppellantKunhikannan
RespondentAdjutant General and anr.
Cases ReferredSom Datt Datta v. Union of India
Excerpt:
- .....imposed by section 164 or by section 165 of the army act upon the central government to give reasons in support of its decision to confirm the proceedings of the court-martial, such a requirement cannot be read into that section. apart from the requirement imposed by the statute or statutory rule, it could not be said that there was any general principle or any rule of natural justice that a statutory tribunal should always in every case give reasons in. support of its decisions. such orders could not be held to be illegal for not giving any reasons for confirming the order of the court-martial. for this view that i have expressed above i find support from the decision in som datt datta v. union of india : 1969crilj663 .4. for the foregoing reasons this writ petition fails and is.....
Judgment:
ORDER

K. Bhaskaran, J.

1. The prayer in the writ petition is for quashing Ext, p 3 order dated 3-8-1977 passed by the first respondent, Adjutant General Personnel Services Directorate, (PS. IC) Army Headquarters, New Delhi directing the Superintendent, Central Jail, Jammu to inform the petitioner who at the lime of the filing of the writ petition was an ex-serviceman that his appeal petition was rejected. Alternatively it is prayed that there might be a direction, to the first, respondent, Adjutant General to furnish the petitioner a copy of the grounds of rejection, if any, of his petition Ext. P 2. There is a further prayer that the first respondent might be asked to consider his appeal petition Exhibit P 2 afresh and pass fresh orders. Exhibit P 1 is the finding of the Court-Martial held on 9-2-76 whereunder the petitioner was sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for two years and dismissal from service. Exhibit P 2 is the copy of the memorandum of appeal presented by the petitioner to the Chief of the Army Staff, Army Headquarters, New Delhi. Ext. P 3 is the order by which the first respondent disposed of Exhibit P 2 appeal petition.

2. Counsel for the petitioner submitted that in disposing of an appeal filed by the petitioner invoking provisions of Section 164(2) of the Army Act, 1950, the first respondent ought to have given reasons for rejecting the appeal.

3. I do not think that the appeal Under Section 164(2) of the Army Act, 1950 was to be disposed of by a detailed order giving the reasoning in support of the conclusions reached. What is provided for in Sub-section (2) of Section 164 is as follows:

164 (2). Any person subject to this Act who considers himself aggrieved by a finding or sentence of any court-martial which has been confirmed, may present a petition to the Central Government, the Chief of the Army Staff or arty prescribed officer superior in command to the one who confirmed such finding or sentence, and the Central Government, the Chief of the Army Staff or other officer, as the case may be, may pass such orders thereon as it or he thinks fit.

In terms of the section no detailed order is contemplated where, in appeal, the order passed by the authority from whose order the appeal has been preferred is confirmed. In the absence of an. express obligation imposed by Section 164 or by Section 165 of the Army Act upon the Central Government to give reasons in support of its decision to confirm the proceedings of the Court-Martial, such a requirement cannot be read into that section. Apart from the requirement imposed by the statute or statutory rule, it could not be said that there was any general principle or any rule of natural justice that a statutory Tribunal should always in every case give reasons in. support of its decisions. Such orders could not be held to be illegal for not giving any reasons for confirming the order of the Court-Martial. For this view that I have expressed above I find support from the decision in Som Datt Datta v. Union of India : 1969CriLJ663 .

4. For the foregoing reasons this writ petition fails and is dismissed. However in the circumstances of the case I direct the parties to bear their respective costs.


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