Sunday, January 6, 2019

HC quashed GSHSEB chairman’s decision to remove member

AHMEDABAD: Gujarat high court has pulled up the Gujarat Secondary and Higher Secondary Education Board (GSHSEB) chairman A J Shah for his autocratic decision to remove a board member for giving an interview on a television channel.

Gujarat High Court quashed the board’s decision by terming it an excess of use of power and by saying that the courts are there to control it.

Priyavadan Korat, an elected member of the board representing the parent’s associations, had given an interview on a television channel on October 12 in which he had lambasted the board for its alleged irregularities and corruption. This did not go down well with the board chairman, who made a recommendation for his removal and ultimately removed him from the post.

Shah issued a show-cause notice to Korat on October 22. He replied to the notice and sought documents on basis of which he was issued the notice. He was not supplied the documents and on November 22, Shah passed an order for Korat’s removal. Korat knocked at the HC doors complaining about arbitrary and autocratic behaviour on part of the chairman without taking other office bearers and members of the board into confidence and without discussing the matter with them.

When Justice J B Pardiwala heard the case, he questioned the state government and the board whether the chairman Shah alone is in himself the board and whether he is required to take decisions without passing any resolution. The HC quashed the order of Korat’s removal from the board but permitted the board to take a fresh decision on the issue according to rules after proper deliberation.

The high court cited five reasons for interfering with a decision taken by the board chairman with observation that the courts otherwise would not like to take a decision on whether the chairman’s conclusions about Korat’s behaviour requiring his removal was proper or not. But the judge observed that the courts are there to control excesses of administrative powers. “The role of the courts in this field is to serve as a check against the excess of power and abuse of the exercise of power in derogation of private right. The 

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