Railway Servant (Discipline and Appeal) Rules 1968 (DAR Rules)
- Art 310 – Central Government employees hold their positions during the pleasure of the President, who is in control of their discipline.
- Art 311(1) – No civil servant shall be dismissed or removed from service by an authority subordinate to the authority who appointed him.
- Art 311(2) - No civil servant shall be dismissed or removed from service or reduced in rank without an enquiry in which he is informed of the charges against him and is given a reasonable opportunity to be heard about these charges.
Principle of Natural Justice
- This principle elaborate the reasonable opportunity which should be given to the charged employee . Chief Justice SR Sinha of the Supreme Court of India has suggested the following guidelines:
- Nobody can be a judge in his own cause.
- None should be condemned without being heard.
- All decisions should be made in good faith.
In relation to a Railway employee it means
i) The authority to make appointments to the service of which the Railway employee is a member for the time being or to the grade or service in which for the time being he is included, OR
ii) The authority empowered to make appointments to the post which the Railway employee for the time being holds, OR
iii) The authority which appointed the Railway employee to such service grade or post, OR
iv) Where the Railway employee is a permanent member of any other service or having substantively held any other permanent post, has been in continuous employment under the Ministry of Railways, the authority which appointed him to that service or to any grade in that service or to that post whichever authority is highest.
In relation to the imposition of penalty of a Railway employee, the authority competent to impose him a penalty will be –
- In normal course - as per the schedule for this purpose.
- For imposing a major penalty such authority will be Appointing authority
Any authority who can impose a penalty under DAR Rules can impose a minor penalty.
For initiating a Disciplinary proceeding, an authority who is competent to impose a minor penalty may issue the chargesheet. But on finding out that the punishment required to be imposed is not within his competence he should forward the case to competent authority.
- The official nominated by the Disciplinary authority to conduct disciplinary enquiry is the Inquiry authority. It could be the Disciplinary Authority itself or a single officer/supervisor or a committee of two or more officers.
- This authority should be impartial, unconnected with the case and not lower in rank to the charged employee or the officer who held the fact finding enquiry except in Accident/Vigilance/SPE cases.
- Where there is a case of sexual harassment, the Complaints Committee established for enquiring into it shall be deemed to be the inquiring authority.
- The charged employee may present his case with the help of another person who is known as Defence helper or Defence Councel.
- Defence Councel could be another employee or a retired Railway employee or a Trade union official of a recognised union.
- He should not be a legal practitioner and should not be associated with the case in his official capacity.
- Nomination of Defence Councel should be made within 20 days from the date of appointment of Inquiry Authority.