Cat Refuses to Quash order against NHAI Woman Staff

Published: 05th May 2015 06:03 AM  |   Last Updated: 05th May 2015 06:03 AM   |  A+A-

CHENNAI: The Chennai bench of Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) quashed the appeal of an employee of the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) who had moved the tribunal to set aside disciplinary proceedings initiated against her on corruption charges.

P Sulochna, a personal assistant at the NHAI’s regional office moved the CAT, submitting that she joined service in Feb 2004 and was directed to make an official visit to Jaipur in Sept 2009 as part of one of NHAI projects in association with an NGO working for mentally challenged kids.

Under the directions of SS Singhvi, chief general manager and regional officer of NHAI, she signed a land document presuming it to be a part of the project work. Sulochana received `1 lakh from the officer to meet her financial situation.

Subsequently, the Anti- Corruption Branch of CBI registered an FIR against Singhvi, and an inquiry was held in December 2009. CBI seized a receipt of `1 lakh and land documents from Sulochana’s office.

In her statement to CBI, she said the receipt was for the amount which a contractor had voluntarily donated to the NGO. The land documents were for a property which was purchased in Sulochana’s name without her knowledge.  Though CBI did not initiate any proceedings against her, the NHAI punished her by withholding her promotion for two years. After she filed an appeal, the chairman of NHAI modified the order, and promoted her retrospectively. She was also provided notional increments without actual monetary benefits. Sulochana then moved the CAT stating that the order was passed without a proper inquiry.

Countering her arguments, counsel for NHAI argued that the vigilance department of NHAI had found her guilty of accepting donations from contractors and acquiring immovable property purchased by third party in her name. Hence, she was awarded the punishment. The order of punishment, however, was later modified.

The bench comprising judicial member K Elango and administrative member P Prabhakaran said, “Sulochana was provided with sufficient opportunity to represent herself. Also, the entire investigation were done on the basis of documentary evidences like property documents. As the punishment order were passed according to rules, Sulochana’s petition was devoid of merit.”

Stay up to date on all the latest Chennai news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp