Telangana High Court. (PTI Photo)
Hyderabad: While the high court’s Sword of Damocles is hanging over chief secretary Somesh Kumar for his failure to take back IPS officer Abhishek Mohanty into the Telangana state cadre, the government on Tuesday reported to the high court and the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT)’s Hyderabad bench that it will implement their orders in this respect soon.
Advocate general BS Prasad placed the GO-583 dated 14 March 2022, issued by the Telangana state general administration department, which stated that, pursuant to the CAT orders, Abhishek Mohanty is admitted into Telangana state cadre following his removal from the AP state cadre. However, the GO also said the said absorption is subject to the final outcome of the appeal filed by the Union Government against the CAT orders.
After perusal of the GO issued by the GAD, the division bench of Telangana high court comprising Justice Ujjal Bhuyan and Justice Venkateswar Reddy, did not seek the personal appearance of chief secretary before CAT on Tuesday.
The CS was to appear before CAT the last time. However, he approached the high court to stay the contempt proceedings against him initiated by CAT for not complying with its orders in taking Abhishek Mohanty into the Telangana cadre. The CS keeps fighting the case.
Last week, the high court had given relief to Kumar to the extent of four days and made it clear that he either take Abhishek Mohanty into Telangana cadre or be ready to face contempt proceedings initiated by the CAT.
As the HC has taken a strong stand over the suspected delaying tactic, the Telangana government on Tuesday came before the HC to express its willingness to comply with the orders and placed GO- 583 before it.
Satisfied with the details placed before it by the government, the division bench closed the interim application of Kumar. However, the bench declined to either close or stay the contempt case pending before CAT against Kumar. The HC asked the advocate general to ask CAT to close the contempt case.
CAT directed to submit the compliance report on its orders
After the hearing concluded at the high court, counsel for the state requested the CAT Bench in Hyderabad to close the contempt case against Kumar. However, Polluri Bhasker and other sounsels representing Abhishek Mohanty objected to the request. They brought to the notice of CAT that the orders of the CAT dated 19 July 2021 had specifically directed the Telangana government to accommodate Abhishek Mohanty in the Telangana Cadre and issue appropriate posting to him.
But the GO-583 issued by Telangana State only stated that it is admitting Mohanty into the Telangana cadre. It did not mention about his posting and also didn`t mention the payment of salary to Mohanty, which is due since the past six months, counsels argued.
Considering these contentions, the CAT bench directed the government to submit the compliance report in pursuant to its directions, within two weeks. Once the compliance report was placed, the CAT may close the contempt case against CS.