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Calcutta HC Imposes Penalty on Bengal Education Department for Ignoring Court Order

In Nation
July 25, 2023

Calcutta High Court’s single- judge bench of Justice Abhijit Gangopadhyay on Tuesday imposed a penalty of Rs 50,000 on the West Bengal education department for ignoring an earlier court order of timely initiating department inquiry in a particular school recruitment irregularities case.

In 2012 there were complaints relating to irregularities in the primary teachers recruitment in East Midnapore district. The matter reached the Calcutta High Court which in 2016 directed the-then principal secretary to the state education department to start a probe in the matter.

However, the probe process was not started even after years passed since the Calcutta High Court ordered for it. Recently, another petition was filed at the single- judge bench of Justice Gangopadhyay, where the delay in the beginning of the probe process was pointed out.

The matter came up for hearing on Tuesday and at the end of the hearing Justice Gangopadhyay imposed a financial penalty on the state education department. He also directed the department authorities to deposit the amount to the legal aid services department of the court within the next ten days.

Justice Gangopadhyay also suggested the penalty amount might be recovered by the department from those who are found guilty in the probe process. He also directed the current principal secretary to the state education department to complete the probe process within the next six weeks and submit a detailed report on this count to his court after that.

The next hearing in the matter is scheduled on September 12. Justice Gangopadhyay also observed that the state education secretary should resign if he does not have the authority to take decisions.

Last week only Justice Gangopadhyaycautioned the president of West Bengal Board of Primary Education (WBBSE) Gautam Paul of ordering for stop- payment of his salaries on charges of misleading the court. However, Justice Gangopadhyay softened hisstand later as Paul tendered apology with folded hands.