HC strikes down order on suspension of Indore civic engineer

The Madhya Pradesh High Court has struck down the order of the Indore Municipal Corporation (IMC) suspending its superintending engineer eight months ago, soon after he had lodged a police complaint in the honey-trap case.
Justice S C Sharma of the Indore bench of the high court also directed the civic body to pay Harbhajan Singh, the superintending engineer, his salary and other dues.
“The petitioner shall be entitled for subsistence allowance for the period with effect from September 23, 2019 (date of suspension) up to 45 days. In respect of the period after 45 days from the date of suspension, the petitioner shall be entitled for full salary,” Justice Sharma observed.
The high court had on Wednesday allowed Singh’s petition challenging his suspension, but the lawyers in the case received the copy of the order on Friday and shared it with the media.
In his submission, the petitoner’s counsel Rohit Saboo said that even after the expiry of 45 days of Singh’s suspension, neither a charge-sheet had been issued, nor his suspension order been revoked. Besides that, Singh’s suspension order, too, has not been extended, he added.
He sought relief for Singh on these grounds.
Advocate Rishi Tiwari, who represented the IMC, cited a Delhi High Court order and argued that suspension was not a punishment, and merely because charge-sheet has not been issued within 45/90 days, thesuspension order does not become a nullity.
The honey-trap racket had come to light in September last year after Singh had approached police claiming he was being blackmailed to the tune of Rs 3 crore over objectionable video clips.
Five women and a man were arrested in Indore and Bhopal in the sex racket in which names of high and mighty cropped up during the investigation.
The Indore civic body had suspended Singh on the ground that he was allegedly involved in immoral acts.