Bolangir job scam: SAT bars action on appointees for now

Cuttack: The State Administrative Tribunal (SAT), which had passed an interim stay order on the Odisha government’s decision to annul the appointments of revenue inspectors (RIs) and Amins in Bolangir district, today asked the government not to take any stern action till the next hearing.

The Tribunal had ordered an interim stay on the government’s decision to declare the appointments null and void. The appointments cannot be annulled without giving an opportunity to the appointees to put forth their side as it violates sub section (ii) of section 311 of CrPC, the SAT had observed while hearing a petition over the issue on March 10.

Bolangir collector M Muthu Kumar on March 10 had issued a notification terminating the appointment of 169 RIs, amins and assistant revenue inspectors (ARIs) appointed in Bolangir district in 2013.

The state government on March 4 had directed the RDC (Northern range) with a copy marked to the Bolangir district collector to take appropriate steps to declare these appointments as null and void

The State government’s move came after massive irregularities came to fore in the recruitment process that took place in 2013.

Some top officials, including the then Collector of Bolangir Debraj Mishra and his senior clerk Niranjan Tripathy, were arrested in 2014 and 2015 respectively by the vigilance while five other OAS officers, including a deputy collector, a tehsildar and two Block Development Officers (BDOs) were also booked.