The Delhi High Court has dismissed the petition filed by an ex-officer of the Delhi Higher Judicial Services challenging his removal from services for allegedly sexually harassing a female Ahlmad at the Dwarka District Court.
A divisional bench of Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw and Justice Asha Menon in its judgment noted,
“…having judicially examined the report, not only as to the procedure followed and opportunities at each and every stage provided to the petitioner but also on merits, we are more than convinced, of the conclusion having been rightly drawn on the basis of material on record, that the allegations of sexual harassment against the petitioner, stand proved.”
The Court’s decision came on a plea by the officer, who had challenged his dismissal from service by the Delhi government in March last year, on the recommendations of the “Full Court” of the Delhi High Court on charges of sexual harassment. The officer had sought his restoration in service, with all consequential benefits.
A complaint regarding sexual harassment at the workplace was filed against the ex-judicial officer on July 5, 2016 itself by the woman officer of his court. In her complaint, she had said that she worked in the court of the accused officer as Ahlmad (judicial assistant) between May 18, 2015 and May 18, 2016. The registrar general of the Delhi High Court, after the incident, had directed the station house officer (SHO) to register an FIR against the accused officer and he was suspended from service.
The counsel appearing for the petitioner submitted that “that the petitioner has been denied right of appeal under Section 18 of the Sexual Harassment Act.”
The bench observed that
“…also on merits, we are more than convinced, of the conclusion having been rightly drawn on the basis of material on record, that the allegations of sexual harassment against the petitioner, stand proved.”
The bench dismissed the petition considering the judgment in the case of Dinesh Chandra Mishra Vs. India Council of Agriculture Research where a Coordinate Bench of Delhi High Court, while dealing with a contention of Section 18 of the Sexual Harassment Act had held appeal under Section 18 of the Sexual Harassment Act is provided in cases where the recommendation of the ICC itself is final and is ipso facto binding and enforceable under Section 13(4) of the Sexual Harassment Act and which is not the position in case of a person governed by CCS CCA Rules.
Thus, in accordance with the said judgment also, the petitioner had no right of appeal, said the Court.RSE29012021CW53902020_195610