New Delhi: The Delhi high court has upheld the centre’s decision in 2016 to remove the then chairman and managing director (CMD) of Bank of Maharashtra for allegedly occupying two rent-free official accommodations.
A bench of justices Sanjiv Khanna and Pratibha M. Singh dismissed the plea of the CMD, Sushil Muhnot, who had challenged his removal from the post, four days before he was scheduled to retire, on the ground that the government did not consult the bank’s board of directors.
In his plea, Muhnot had contended that under the Nationalised Banks (Management and Miscellaneous Provisions) Scheme of 1970, it was provided that there should be a consultation with the bank’s board, which was not adhered to by the government.
The bench rejected the contention saying that after going through the minutes of the 4 June, 2016 meeting of the board, “it cannot be said that consultation with the board was absent or the procedure as mandated was violated".
“The board had given its comments, in whatever manner it had felt necessary. This is not a case wherein the consultative process was not initiated or that the matter was not put to the board for its opinion and comments.
“The board had considered different issues and had tendered its opinion. We do not think, in the context of the present case, it can be urged and accepted that there was failure to consult or the decision taken by the Government of India is vitiated and bad for want of consultation," it said.
“In view of the aforesaid discussion, we do not find any merit in the present writ petition and the same is accordingly, dismissed," the bench added.
Muhnot, who was appointed as CMD of Bank of Maharashtra on 9 November, 2013, was removed from the post by the government on 26 September, 2016. The action was taken on the basis of some complaints regarding occupation of two rent-free official accommodations and exorbitant expenditure on renovation, by him.