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Sunday, February 2, 2014

Adverse comments against a person who is not a party to the proceedings , damaging his reputation by the court is unwarranted and is liable to be expunged - Single Judge passed adverse comments against the C.M. and directed to recover the amount from his pocket also - when asked for expunge, the D.B. bench also confirmed the orders of the single judge stating that those are based on material on record - Apex court held that with out hearing the appellant , how the court can pass adverse remarks damaging his reputation which is not necessary to decided the dispute as it is well settled law and as such the apex court set aside the orders of single judge and D.B. of high court = Om Prakash Chautala … Appellant Versus Kanwar Bhan and others …Respondents = 2014 (January part) judis.nic.in/supremecourt/filename=41195

Adverse comments against a person who is not a party to the proceedings , damaging his reputation by the court is unwarranted and is liable to be expunged - Single Judge passed adverse comments against the C.M. and directed to recover the amount from his pocket also - when asked for expunge, the D.B. bench also confirmed the orders of  the single judge stating that those are based on material on record - Apex court held that with out hearing the appellant , how the court can pass adverse remarks damaging his reputation which is not necessary to decided the dispute as it is well settled law and as such the apex court set aside the orders of single judge and D.B. of high court =

whether the remarks were really necessary to render the decision by
        the learned single Judge and the finding recorded by  the  Division
        Bench that the observations are based on the material on record and
        they do not cause any prejudice, are legally sustainable.    As far
        as finding of the Division Bench is concerned that they  are  based
        on materials brought on record is absolutely unjustified in view of
        the following principles laid down in Mohammad Naim (supra): -

           “It has been judicially recognized that in the matter of  making

           disparaging remarks against persons or authorities whose conduct
           comes into consideration before courts of law  in  cases  to  be
           decided by them, it is relevant  to  consider 
 (a)  whether  the
           party whose conduct is in question is before the court or has an
           opportunity of explaining  or  defending  himself; 
 (b)  whether
           there is evidence on record bearing on that  conduct  justifying
           the remarks; and 
(c) whether it is necessary for the decision of
           the case, as an integral part thereof,  to  animadvert  on  that
           conduct.”




    13. On a perusal of the order we  find  that  two  aspects  are  clear,

        namely, (i) that the appellant was not before the court,  and  (ii)
        by no stretch of logic the observations  and  the  directions  were
        required to decide the lis.  We are disposed to think so as we find
        that the  learned  single  Judge  has  opined  that  the  order  of
        suspension was unjustified and that is why it was revoked. 

 “The petitioner is also justified in  making  a  grievance  that
           first the Chief Minister had suspended him on  the  basis  of  a
           loose talk in the press conference and thereafter the  officials
           of the Government have attempted to justify their  own  mistakes
           on the one pretext or the other.  The petitioner would term this
           case to be “a proof of worst ugly look of Indian democracy”.  He
           may be an aggrieved person but his anger is justified  to  refer
           this treatment to be an ugly  face  of  democracy.   Is  not  it
           dictatorial display of power in democratic set up?  Final  order
           is yet to be passed regarding this charge sheet.  It  is  orally
           pointed out that the charge sheet is finalized on 16.9.2009.  It
           is  done  without  holding  any  enquiry  or   associating   the
           petitioner in any manner.  How can this  be  sustained  in  this
           background?”

                       xxx        xxx        xxx


           “Chief Minister was bound to inform himself of  the  well  known

           maxim “be you ever so high, the law is above you”.

                       xxx        xxx        xxx


           “The respondents, thus, have made themselves  fully  responsible

           for this plight of the petitioner on account of the illegalities
           that have been pointed out and which the respondents have failed
           to justify in any cogent or reasonable manner.  They all are  to
           be held accountable for this.  This would include even the  then
           Chief Minister, who initiated this illegal process and  did  not
           intervene to correct the illegality ever thereafter.”

                       xxx        xxx        xxx


           “The interest awardable shall be recovered from all the officers

           and including the Chief Minister, who  were  either  responsible
           for placing the petitioner under suspension or  in  perpetuating
           the illegality and had unnecessarily charged  and  harassed  the
           petitioner.”

                       xxx        xxx        xxx


           “Liberty  is,  therefore,  given  to  the  petitioner  to   seek

           compensation for the harassment caused to him by approaching any
           appropriate Forum, including Civil Court, where he can seek this
           compensation even from the then Chief Minister.”

In State of Bihar and another v. P.P. Sharma, IAS  and  another[1],
        this Court has laid down that the person against whom mala fides or
        bias is imputed should be impleaded as a party  respondent  to  the
        proceeding and be given an opportunity to meet the allegations.  In
        his absence no enquiry into the allegations  should  be  made,  for
        such an enquiry would tantamount to violative of the principles  of
        natural justice as  it  amounts  to  condemning  a  person  without
        affording an opportunity of hearing.

     9. In Testa Setalvad and another v. State of Gujarat and others[2] the

        High Court had made certain caustic  observations  casting  serious
        aspersions on the appellants therein, though they were not  parties
        before the High Court.  Verifying the record  that  the  appellants
        therein  were  not  parties  before  the  High  Court,  this  Court
        observed: -

           “It is beyond comprehension as to how the learned Judges in  the

           High Court could afford to overlook such  a  basic  and  vitally
           essential tenet of the “rule of law”,  that  no  one  should  be
           condemned unheard, and risk  themselves  to  be  criticized  for
           injudicious approach and/or render  their  decisions  vulnerable
           for  challenge  on  account  of  violating  judicial  norms  and
           ethics.”

      And again: -


           “Time and again this Court has deprecated the practice of making

           observations in judgments, unless the persons in respect of whom
           comments and criticisms were being  made  were  parties  to  the
           proceedings, and further were granted an opportunity  of  having
           their say in the matter, unmindful of the serious  repercussions
           they may entail on such persons.”





In view of the  aforesaid  analysis,   we  have  no  hesitation  in
        holding that disparaging remarks, as recorded by the learned single
        Judge, are not necessary for arriving at the decision which he  has
        rendered, the same being not an  integral  part  and  further  that
        could not have been done when the appellant was not a party  before
        the court and also he was never afforded an opportunity to  explain
        his conduct, and the affirmation of the same by the Division  Bench
        on the foundation that it has not caused any prejudice and  he  can
        fully defend himself when a subsequent  litigation  is  instituted,
        are legally unacceptable.  Accordingly, we  expunge  the  extracted
        remarks hereinbefore and also any remarks which have been made that
        are likely to affect the reputation of the  appellant.  Since,  the
        appeal is confined only to expunging of adverse remarks,  the  same
        is allowed.  There shall be no order as to costs.



2014  (January part) judis.nic.in/supremecourt/filename=41195

ANIL R. DAVE, DIPAK MISRA

                        IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA


                        CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION


                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  1785 OF 2014
                (Arising out of S.L.P. (C) No. 14409 of 2010)


      Om Prakash Chautala                          … Appellant


                                   Versus


      Kanwar Bhan and others                       …Respondents










                               J U D G M E N T




      Dipak Misra, J.




           Leave granted.

     1. Reputation is fundamentally a glorious amalgam and  unification  of
        virtues which makes a man feel proud of his ancestry and  satisfies
        him to bequeath it as a part of inheritance on the posterity. It is
        a nobility in itself for which  a  conscientious  man  would  never
        barter it with all the tea of China or  for  that  matter  all  the
        pearls of the  sea.   The  said  virtue  has  both  horizontal  and
        vertical qualities.  When reputation is hurt, a man  is  half-dead.
        It is an honour which deserves to be equally preserved by the  down
        trodden  and  the  privileged.   The  aroma  of  reputation  is  an
        excellence which cannot be allowed to be sullied with  the  passage
        of time.  The memory of nobility no one would like  to  lose;  none
        would conceive of it being atrophied.  It is dear to  life  and  on
        some occasions it is dearer than life.  And  that  is  why  it  has
        become an inseparable facet of Article 21 of the Constitution.   No
        one would like to have his reputation dented.  One  would  like  to
        perceive it as an honour rather  than  popularity.   When  a  court
        deals with a matter that has something likely to affect a  person’s
        reputation, the normative principles of law are  to  be  cautiously
        and carefully adhered to.  The advertence has to  be  sans  emotion
        and sans populist perception, and absolutely  in  accord  with  the
        doctrine of audi alteram partem before anything adverse is said.

     2. We  have  commenced  with  aforesaid  prefatory  note  because  the
        centripodal question that has eminently emanated for  consideration
        in this appeal, by special leave, is 
whether the judgment and order
        passed by the learned single Judge of the High Court of Punjab  and
        Haryana at Chandigarh in CWP No. 12384 of 2008  commenting  on  the
        conduct of the appellant and further directing recovery of interest
        component awarded to the employee,  the  first  respondent  herein,
        from the present appellant and also to realize the  cost  and  seek
        compensation in appropriate legal  forum,  including  civil  court,
        though the appellant was  not  arrayed  as  a  party  to  the  writ
        petition, and denial of expunction of  the  aforesaid  observations
        and directions by the Division Bench in L.P.A. No. 1456 of 2009  on
        the foundation that the same are based on the material available on
        record and, in any case, grant of liberty to claim compensation  or
        interest could not be held to be a stricture causing  prejudice  to
        the appellant who would have full opportunity of defending  himself
        in any proceeding which  may  be  brought  by  the  respondent  for
        damages or recovery of interest, is legally defensible or bound  to
        founder on the ground that the appellant was  not  impleaded  as  a
        respondent to the proceeding.   Be it noted, the Division Bench has
        also opined that the observations made by the learned single  Judge
        are not  conclusive  and  no  prejudice  has  been  caused  to  the
        appellant, the then Chief Minister of the State of Haryana.

     3. Filtering the unnecessary  details,  the  facts  which  are  to  be
        exposited are that the first respondent was  working  as  Assistant
        Registrar of Cooperative Societies in  the  State  of  Haryana.  On
        4.2.2001 during a state function “Sarkar Apke  Dwar”  at  Jagadhari
        constituency the appellant received a complaint from some person in
        the public, including the elected representative, about the working
        of the respondent No.1.  The appellant after considering the verbal
        complaint announced the suspension of the first  respondent  during
        the press conference on the  same  day.  On  06.02.2001  the  first
        respondent was  placed  under  suspension  by  the  letter  of  the
        Financial Commissioner & Secretary to Govt. of Haryana, Cooperation
        Department, Chandigarh which was followed  by  charge  sheet  dated
        27.03.2002.    The first respondent filed CWP  No.  16025  of  2001
        against the suspension order which was disposed  of  on  20.03.2002
        with direction to the Government.  On 28.03.2002 the 1st respondent
        was reinstated pending inquiry. After issuance of charge sheet  and
        revocation of the suspension order, the first respondent  submitted
        his reply on 5.6.2002.

     4. As the facts would undrape,  nothing  happened  thereafter  and  he
        stood superannuated  on  31.01.2005  and  was  granted  provisional
        pension, provident fund and amount of  Group  Insurance  Claim  but
        pension as due and other  retiral  benefits  like  gratuity,  leave
        encashment, commutation of other leaves, etc. were withheld due  to
        pendency  of  disciplinary  proceedings.   On  6.2.2007  the  first
        respondent filed CWP No. 2243 of 2007 which was disposed of by  the
        High Court directing the government to complete the enquiry  within
        a period of six months from the date of  receipt  of  copy  of  the
        order.  As the enquiry was  not  concluded  within  the  stipulated
        time, the employee preferred CWP No. 12384 of  2008.   The  learned
        single Judge vide judgment and order dated 20.10.2009  allowed  the
        writ petition and set aside the  charge-sheet  and  the  punishment
        with further directions to release all the pension  and  pensionary
        benefits due to the first respondent within a period of  one  month
        with interest @ 10 % p.a. from the due date to the date of payment.
          In course of judgment  the  learned  single  Judge  made  certain
        observations against the appellant herein.

     5. Grieved by the observations and inclusive directions  made  in  the
        judgment the  appellant  preferred  LPA  No.  1456  of  2009.   The
        contentions raised by the appellant in the intra-court appeal  that
        the adverse remarks were not at all necessary  to  adjudicate  upon
        the issue involved in the matter,  and  further  when  he  was  not
        impleaded as a  party  to  the  writ  petition  recording  of  such
        observations  was  totally  impermissible,  as   it   fundamentally
        violated the principles of natural justice, were  not  accepted  by
        the Division Bench as a consequence of which  the  appeal  did  not
        meet with success.

     6.  We have heard  Mr.  P.P.  Rao,  learned  senior  counsel  for  the
        appellant  and  Mr.  Hitesh  Malik,  Additional  Advocate   General
        appearing for the State.  Despite service of  notice  there  is  no
        appearance on behalf of the private respondent, that is, respondent
        No. 1.

     7. As has been indicated earlier, the appellant was not a party to the
        proceeding.  It is manifest that the learned single Judge has  made
        certain disparaging remarks against the appellant and, in fact,  he
        has  been  also  visited   with   certain   adverse   consequences.
        Submission of Mr. P.P. Rao, learned senior  counsel,  is  that  the
        observations and the directions are wholly unsustainable  when  the
        appellant was not impleaded  as  a  party  to  the  proceeding  and
        further they are totally unwarranted for the  adjudication  of  the
        controversy that travelled to the Court.

     8. In State of Bihar and another v. P.P. Sharma, IAS  and  another[1],
        this Court has laid down that the person against whom mala fides or
        bias is imputed should be impleaded as a party  respondent  to  the
        proceeding and be given an opportunity to meet the allegations.  In
        his absence no enquiry into the allegations  should  be  made,  for
        such an enquiry would tantamount to violative of the principles  of
        natural justice as  it  amounts  to  condemning  a  person  without
        affording an opportunity of hearing.

     9. In Testa Setalvad and another v. State of Gujarat and others[2] the
        High Court had made certain caustic  observations  casting  serious
        aspersions on the appellants therein, though they were not  parties
        before the High Court.  Verifying the record  that  the  appellants
        therein  were  not  parties  before  the  High  Court,  this  Court
        observed: -

           “It is beyond comprehension as to how the learned Judges in  the
           High Court could afford to overlook such  a  basic  and  vitally
           essential tenet of the “rule of law”,  that  no  one  should  be
           condemned unheard, and risk  themselves  to  be  criticized  for
           injudicious approach and/or render  their  decisions  vulnerable
           for  challenge  on  account  of  violating  judicial  norms  and
           ethics.”

      And again: -

           “Time and again this Court has deprecated the practice of making
           observations in judgments, unless the persons in respect of whom
           comments and criticisms were being  made  were  parties  to  the
           proceedings, and further were granted an opportunity  of  having
           their say in the matter, unmindful of the serious  repercussions
           they may entail on such persons.”




    10. In State of W.B. and others v. Babu Chakraborthy
      [3] the principle was reiterated by stating that the High Court was
      not justified and correct in passing observations and strictures
      against the appellants 2 and 3 therein without affording an
      opportunity of being heard.

    11. In Dr.  Dilip  Kumar  Deka  and  another  v.  State  of  Assam  and
        another[4], after referring to the authorities in  State  of  Uttar
        Pradesh v. Mohammad Naim[5], Jage Ram v. Hans  Raj  Midha[6],  R.K.
        Lakshmanan  v.  A.K.  Srinivasan[7]   and   Niranjan   Patnaik   v.
        Sashibhusan Kar[8], this Court opined thus: -

           “7.   We are surprised to find that in spite of the above catena
           of decisions of this Court, the learned Judge  did  not,  before
           making the remarks, give any opportunity to the appellants,  who
           were admittedly not parties to the revision petition, to  defend
           themselves.  It cannot be gainsaid that the  nature  of  remarks
           the learned Judge has made, has cast a serious aspersion on  the
           appellants affecting their character  and  reputation  and  may,
           ultimately  affect  their  career  also.   Condemnation  of  the
           appellants without giving them an opportunity of being heard was
           a complete negation of  the  fundamental  principle  of  natural
           justice.”




    12. At this juncture, it may be clearly stated that singularly  on  the
        basis of  the  aforesaid  principle  the  disparaging  remarks  and
        directions, which are going to be referred to hereinafter,  deserve
        to be annulled but we also think it seemly to advert to  the  facet
        whether the remarks were really necessary to render the decision by
        the learned single Judge and the finding recorded by  the  Division
        Bench that the observations are based on the material on record and
        they do not cause any prejudice, are legally sustainable.    As far
        as finding of the Division Bench is concerned that they  are  based
        on materials brought on record is absolutely unjustified in view of
        the following principles laid down in Mohammad Naim (supra): -

           “It has been judicially recognized that in the matter of  making

           disparaging remarks against persons or authorities whose conduct
           comes into consideration before courts of law  in  cases  to  be
           decided by them, it is relevant  to  consider 
 (a)  whether  the
           party whose conduct is in question is before the court or has an
           opportunity of explaining  or  defending  himself; 
 (b)  whether
           there is evidence on record bearing on that  conduct  justifying
           the remarks; and 
(c) whether it is necessary for the decision of
           the case, as an integral part thereof,  to  animadvert  on  that
           conduct.”




    13. On a perusal of the order we  find  that  two  aspects  are  clear,
        namely, (i) that the appellant was not before the court,  and  (ii)
        by no stretch of logic the observations  and  the  directions  were
        required to decide the lis.  We are disposed to think so as we find
        that the  learned  single  Judge  has  opined  that  the  order  of
        suspension was unjustified and that is why it was revoked.  He  has
        also ruled that there has been arbitrary exercise  of  power  which
        was amenable to judicial review and, more so, when the charges were
        dropped against the employee.  Commenting  on  the  second  charge-
        sheet dated 15.3.2004 the learned single Judge,  referring  to  the
        decisions in State of Andhra Pradesh v. N. Radhakishan[9], State of
        Punjab and others v. Chaman Lal  Goyal[10],  The  State  of  Madhya
        Pradesh v. Bani Singh and another[11] and P.V.  Mahadevan  v.  M.D.
        T.N. Housing Board[12], thought it appropriate to quash the same on
        the ground of delay.  The conclusion could  have  been  arrived  at
        without making series of comments on the  appellant,  who,  at  the
        relevant time, was the Chief Minister of the State.

    14. At this juncture, we  think  it  apt  to  point  out  some  of  the
        observations made against the appellant: -

           “Arrogance of power by the Chief Minister seems to be at play in
           this case”

                       xxx        xxx        xxx

           “The petitioner is also justified in  making  a  grievance  that
           first the Chief Minister had suspended him on  the  basis  of  a
           loose talk in the press conference and thereafter the  officials
           of the Government have attempted to justify their  own  mistakes
           on the one pretext or the other.  The petitioner would term this
           case to be “a proof of worst ugly look of Indian democracy”.  He
           may be an aggrieved person but his anger is justified  to  refer
           this treatment to be an ugly  face  of  democracy.   Is  not  it
           dictatorial display of power in democratic set up?  Final  order
           is yet to be passed regarding this charge sheet.  It  is  orally
           pointed out that the charge sheet is finalized on 16.9.2009.  It
           is  done  without  holding  any  enquiry  or   associating   the
           petitioner in any manner.  How can this  be  sustained  in  this
           background?”

                       xxx        xxx        xxx


           “Chief Minister was bound to inform himself of  the  well  known

           maxim “be you ever so high, the law is above you”.

                       xxx        xxx        xxx


           “The respondents, thus, have made themselves  fully  responsible

           for this plight of the petitioner on account of the illegalities
           that have been pointed out and which the respondents have failed
           to justify in any cogent or reasonable manner.  They all are  to
           be held accountable for this.  This would include even the  then
           Chief Minister, who initiated this illegal process and  did  not
           intervene to correct the illegality ever thereafter.”

                       xxx        xxx        xxx


           “The interest awardable shall be recovered from all the officers

           and including the Chief Minister, who  were  either  responsible
           for placing the petitioner under suspension or  in  perpetuating
           the illegality and had unnecessarily charged  and  harassed  the
           petitioner.”

                       xxx        xxx        xxx


           “Liberty  is,  therefore,  given  to  the  petitioner  to   seek

           compensation for the harassment caused to him by approaching any
           appropriate Forum, including Civil Court, where he can seek this
           compensation even from the then Chief Minister.”




    15. On a studied scrutiny of  the  judgment  in  entirety  we  have  no
        hesitation in holding that the observations  made  by  the  learned
        single Judge were really not necessary as an integral part for  the
        decision of the case as stated in Mohammad Naim’s  case.   Needless
        to say, once the observations  are  not  justified,  as  a  natural
        corollary,  the  directions  have  to  be  treated  as  sensitively
        susceptible.

    16. In this context, it is necessary to state about the role of a Judge
        and  the  judicial  approach.   In  State  of   M.P.   v.   Nandlal
        Jaiswal[13], Bhagwati, CJ, speaking for the court expressed  strong
        disapproval of the strictures made by the learned  Judge  in  these
        terms: -

           “We may observe in conclusion that judges should not use  strong
           and carping language while criticising the conduct of parties or
           their witnesses. They must act  with  sobriety,  moderation  and
           restraint. They must have the humility to  recognise  that  they
           are not infallible and  any  harsh  and  disparaging  strictures
           passed by them against any party may be mistaken and unjustified
           and if so, they may do considerable harm and mischief and result
           in injustice.”


    17. In A.M. Mathur v. Pramod  Kumar  Gupta  and  others[14]  the  Court
        observed that judicial restraint and discipline  are  necessary  to
        the orderly administration of justice.  The duty of  restraint  and
        the humility of function has to be the constant theme for a  Judge,
        for the said quality in decision making is as  much  necessary  for
        Judges to command respect as to protect  the  independence  of  the
        judiciary.  Further proceeding the two-Judge Bench stated thus: -

           “Judicial restraint  in  this  regard  might  better  be  called
           judicial respect, that is, respect by the judiciary. Respect  to
           those who come before the court as  well  to  other  co-ordinate
           branches of the State, the executive and the legislature.  There
           must be mutual  respect.  When  these  qualities  fail  or  when
           litigants and public believe that the judge has failed in  these
           qualities, it will be neither good for the  judge  nor  for  the
           judicial process.”



    18. In Amar Pal Singh v. State of Uttar Pradesh and another[15], it has
        been emphasized that intemperate language should be avoided in  the
        judgments and while penning down the  same  the  control  over  the
        language should not be  forgotten  and  a  committed  comprehensive
        endeavour has to be made to put the concept to practice so that  as
        a conception it gets concretized and fructified.

    19. It needs no special emphasis to state that a Judge  is  not  to  be
        guided by any kind of notion.  The decision making process  expects
        a Judge or an adjudicator to apply restraint, ostracise  perceptual
        subjectivity, make one’s emotions subservient  to  one’s  reasoning
        and think dispassionately.  He is expected  to  be  guided  by  the
        established norms of judicial process and decorum.  A judgment  may
        have rhetorics but the said rhetoric has to be dressed with  reason
        and must be in accord with the legal principles.  Otherwise a  mere
        rhetoric, especially in a judgment, may likely to  cause  prejudice
        to a person and courts  are  not  expected  to  give  any  kind  of
        prejudicial remarks against a person, especially so, when he is not
        a party before it.  In that  context,  the  rhetoric  becomes  sans
        reason, and without root.  It is likely  to  blinden  the  thinking
        process.  A Judge is required to remember that humility and respect
        for temperance and chastity  of  thought  are  at  the  bedrock  of
        apposite expression.  In this regard, we may profitably refer to  a
        passage from Frankfurter, Felix, in Clark, Tom C.,[16]:

           “For the highest exercise of judicial  duty  is  to  subordinate
           one’s personal pulls and one’s private views to the law of which
           we are all guardians – those impersonal convictions that make  a
           society a civilized community, and not the victims  of  personal
           rule,”

    20. The said learned Judge had said: -

           “What becomes decisive to a Justice’s functioning on  the  Court
           in the large area within which his individuality  moves  is  his
           general attitude towards law, the habits of  mind  that  he  has
           formed or is capable of unforming, his capacity for  detachment,
           his temperament or training for putting his passion  behind  his
           judgment instead of in front of it.[17]”



    21. Thus, a Judge should abandon his passion. He must constantly remind
        himself that he has a singular master  “duty  to  truth”  and  such
        truth is to be arrived at within the legal parameters.  No heroism,
        no rehtorics.

    22. Another facet gaining significance and deserves to be adverted  to,
        when caustic observations are made which are not  necessary  as  an
        integral  part  of  adjudication  and  it  affects   the   person’s
        reputation  –  a  cherished  right  under   Article   21   of   the
        Constitution.  In Umesh  Kumar  v.  State  of  Andhra  Pradesh  and
        another[18] this Court has observed: -

           “Personal  rights  of  a  human  being  include  the  right   of
           reputation.   A  good  reputation  is  an  element  of  personal
           security and is protected by the Constitution equally  with  the
           right  to  the  enjoyment  of  life,   liberty   and   property.
           Therefore, it has been held to be a necessary element in  regard
           to  right  to  life  of  a  citizen  under  Article  21  of  the
           Constitution.  The International Covenant on Civil and Political
           Rights, 1966 recognises the right to have opinions and the right
           to freedom of expression under Article  19  is  subject  to  the
           right of reputation of others.”





    23. In Kiran Bedi v. Committee of Inquiry and  another[19]  this  Court
        reproduced the following observations from  the  decision  in  D.F.
        Marion v. Davis[20]:

           “25. … ‘The right to the  enjoyment  of  a  private  reputation,
           unassailed by malicious slander is of  ancient  origin,  and  is
           necessary to human society. A good reputation is an  element  of
           personal security, and is protected by the Constitution  equally
           with the right to the enjoyment of life, liberty, and property.”

    24. In Vishwanath Agrawal v. Sarla Vishwanath Agrawal[21], although  in
        a different context, while dealing with the aspect  of  reputation,
        this Court has observed that reputation is not  only  the  salt  of
        life, but also the purest treasure and the most precious perfume of
        life. It is extremely delicate and a cherished value this  side  of
        the grave. It is a revenue generator for the present as well as for
        the posterity.”

    25. In Mehmood Nayyar Azam v. State of Chhattisgarh and others[22] this
        Court  has  ruled  that  the  reverence  of  life  is  insegregably
        associated with the dignity of  a  human  being  who  is  basically
        divine, not servile. A human personality is endowed with  potential
        infinity and it blossoms when dignity is sustained. The  sustenance
        of such  dignity  has  to  be  the  superlative  concern  of  every
        sensitive soul. The essence of dignity can never be  treated  as  a
        momentary spark of light or, for that matter, “a brief candle”,  or
        “a hollow bubble”. The spark of life gets more resplendent when man
        is treated with dignity sans humiliation, for every man is expected
        to lead an honourable life which is a splendid  gift  of  “creative
        intelligence”. When a dent is created in the  reputation,  humanism
        is paralysed.

    26.  In  Board  of  Trustees  of  the  Port  of  Bombay  v.  Dilipkumar
        Raghavendranath Nadkarni and others[23],  while  dealing  with  the
        value of reputation, a two-Judge Bench expressed thus: -

           “The  expression  ‘life’  has  a  much  wider  meaning.    Where
           therefore the outcome of a departmental  enquiry  is  likely  to
           adversely affect reputation or livelihood of a person,  some  of
           the finer graces of human civilization  which  make  life  worth
           living would be jeopardized and the same can be put in  jeopardy
           only by law which inheres fair procedures.  In this context  one
           can recall the famous words of Chapter II of Bhagwad-Gita :

                 Sambhavitasya Cha Kirti Marnadati Richyate”

    27. The aforesaid principle has been reiterated in State of Maharashtra
        v. Public Concern for Governance Trust and others[24].

    28. In view of the  aforesaid  analysis,   we  have  no  hesitation  in
        holding that disparaging remarks, as recorded by the learned single
        Judge, are not necessary for arriving at the decision which he  has
        rendered, the same being not an  integral  part  and  further  that
        could not have been done when the appellant was not a party  before
        the court and also he was never afforded an opportunity to  explain
        his conduct, and the affirmation of the same by the Division  Bench
        on the foundation that it has not caused any prejudice and  he  can
        fully defend himself when a subsequent  litigation  is  instituted,
        are legally unacceptable.  Accordingly, we  expunge  the  extracted
        remarks hereinbefore and also any remarks which have been made that
        are likely to affect the reputation of the  appellant.  Since,  the
        appeal is confined only to expunging of adverse remarks,  the  same
        is allowed.  There shall be no order as to costs.



                                                                ……………………….J.
                                                              [Anil R. Dave]




                                                                ……………………….J.
                                                               [Dipak Misra]
      New Delhi;
      January 31, 2014.
-----------------------
[1]    1992 Supp (1) SCC 222
[2]    (2004) 10 SCC 88
[3]    (2004) 12 SCC 201
[4]    (1996) 6 SCC 234
[5]    AIR 1964 SC 703
[6]    (1972) 1 SCC 181
[7]    (1975) 2 SCC 466
[8]    (1986) 2 SCC 569
[9]    (1998) 4 SCC 154
[10]   (1995) 2 SCC 570
[11]   JT 1990 (2) SC 54
[12]   (2005) 6 SCC 636
[13]   (1986) 4 SCC 566
[14]   (1990) 2 SCC 533
[15]   (2012) 6 SCC 491
[16]   Mr. Justice Frankfurter : ‘A Heritage for all Who Love the Law,’ 51
A.B.A.J. 330, 332 (1965)
[17]   -FRANKFURTER, Felix, Foreword, to Memorial issue for Robert H.
Jackson, 55 Columbia Law Review (April, 1955) P. 436
[18]   (2013) 10 SCC 591
[19]   (1989) 1 SCC 494
[20]   217 Ala 16 : 114 So 357 : 55 ALR 171 (1927)
[21]   (2012) 7 SCC 288
[22]   (2012) 8 SCC 1
[23]   (1983) 1 SCC 124
[24]   (2007) 3 SCC 587



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