Circuit bench refuses to vacate stay on DCF transfer

Mallesh was posted to Haliyal division in late 2009 but was transferred and replaced by H C Kantharaju in November 2010. Mallesh challenged the transfer in the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) which granted a stay.

However, on an appeal by Kantharaju, a CAT Bench vacated the stay. Mallesh approached the Circuit Bench and the Division Bench comprising Justices N Kumar and Aravind Kumar, again stayed the transfer observing that a tainted person should not be given the charge of an ecologically sensitive region.

Arrested by Lokayukta
Mallesh had pointed out Kantharaju was arrested by the Lokayukta police on October 8, 2009 for offences under Prevention of Corruption Act. He was accused of conducting bogus auction of timber at Titimati in Kodagu.

The officer was released on bail on October 12, 2009. The Division Bench, which stayed the transfer of Mallesh orally observed: “A tainted person who has issued a certificate terming forest land as non-forest land to favour a mining company and is involved in bogus timber auction, cannot be posted to such a sensitive post.”

Meanwhile, Kantharaju moved an interlocutory application seeking vacation of the stay. The Division Bench comprising Justices K L Manjunath and K Govindraju refused to vacate the stay on learning that Mallesh was transferred on the orders of the then chief minister B S Yeddyurappa, at the  instance of State BJP president K S Eshwarappa. The Bench rejected the application with an observation that the transfer was on account of political intervention.

According to Mallesh, Kantharaju was transferred to Haliyal division at the behest of Yeddyurappa. The latter had acted on the letters dated September 11, 2009 and September 15, 2010, written by local MLA Sunil Hegde and Eshwarappa, respectively.

Sangolli, the counsel for Mallesh submitted that according to norms, Mallesh, a group ‘A’ servant, should be allowed to serve for at least three years in a place.

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