Punjab and Haryana High Court Issued Contempt Notice To Sr. Défense Ministry Official | Non-Compliance With AFT Order On Pension


The Punjab and Haryana High Court in the case Room Lal v. Alka Sharma and another observed and has issued the contempt notice to Alka Sharma, principal integrated financial adviser at the Ministry of Defence, MoD and the Major General Ashok Singh, for allegedly not complying with the order of the Armed Forces Tribunal, AFT Chandigarh to give penal amount to a retired Naib Subedar.
The bench headed by Justice Arvind Singh Sangwan in the case observed and has issued the notice stating that ASG accepted the notice and seeks some time to file reply.
In the present case, the plea moved stated that the principal amount was disbursed as per the AFT Chandigarh Bench order to the petitioner but the penal interest was not paid.
Thereafter, in the suo moto action, AFT issued bailable warrant against Major General Ashok Singh and Alka Sharma principal integrated financial advisor.
The court in the case observed that the suo moto proceeding of AFT was challenged by the Union in High Court and the ASG submitted that the due interest will be paid by the end of August 2023 and affidavits were also filed by the alleged contemnors.
The court in the case disposed of the plea wherein it is stated that the suo moto action and warrant will be kept in abeyance and in case the undertaking is not complied with then AFT shall be at liberty to proceed.
The petition moved stated that the officials did not comply with the undertaking and several opportunities was granted to them by AFT but the contempt notice was not issued.
Further, the plea moved alleged that the entire case was transferred without giving notice to the petitioner and other 686 applicants, just to save one officer who is prima-facie guilty of wilfully disobeying the order passed by AFT Chandigarh Bench and also breach of undertaking given by them at Punjab and Haryana High Court Chandigarh, the entire case was transferred from AFT Chandigarh to Principal Bench New Delhi.
Adding to it, the plea stated that as per section 27 of the AFT Act empowers the Chairperson to transfer any pending case but it does not mention transfer of pending execution or more importantly Suo Moto Contempt proceedings which is supposed to be dealt with the Bench which started the same. It has also been provided under section 14(2) of the Contempt of Courts Act that the procedure of transfer of Contempt proceedings starts with the filing of a statement of a statement for transfer before the bench where said proceedings are pending.
Accordingly, the court listed the further consideration on March 13, 2024.
The counsel, Advocates AS Narang, Rajesh Sehgal and Bhim Sen Sehgal appeared for the petitioner.