Rashid Paul

HC allows ousted J&K Bank chairman’s plea to amend his earlier petition

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Srinagar: J&K High Court on Wednesday allowed a plea by the deposed Chairman-cum-CEO of Jammu and Kashmir Bank, Parvez Ahmad Nengroo, seeking amendment in his earlier petition to encompass bifurcation of the post of Chairman-cum-CEO and creation of a Managing Director cum CEO’s post in the Bank.

Nengroo sought to challenge the recent actions by the concerned authorities to include his prayers for declaring the process as well as appointment of Zubair Iqbal as “non-est in the eyes of the law.”

The court allowed Nengroo’s plea to amend his earlier writ petition that challenged his removal from the post of Chairman-cum-CEO of Jammu and Kashmir Bank.

The amended petition now encompasses the challenge to bifurcation of the post Chairman-cum-CEO of the Bank besides creation of the post of Managing Director-cum-CEO and subsequent appointment of Zubair Iqbal.

The lawyer representing the union territory vehemently opposed the application contending “the petition is not maintainable, as such the amendment cannot be allowed”.

He said that that there is lack of bonafides on the part of the petitioner (Nengroo), as he has suppressed the material facts, which were within his knowledge.

The government lawyer further contended that by way of amendment, Nengroo was seeking to introduce a new case, which cannot be allowed.

Justice Sanjay Dhar hearing the matter said “it is an admitted fact that during the pendency of the petition, a separate post of Managing Director stands created against which the appointment of (Zubair Iqbal) has been made…. These are all subsequent developments, which could not have been within the knowledge of (Nengroo) when he initially filed his writ petition challenging his removal.”

He also rejected the contention by the government that the amendment sought was not necessary for determination of real controversy between the parties concerned.

“The same is also misconceived because even if the petitioner (Nengroo) succeeds in convincing this court that his removal from the post of Managing Director-cum-CEO was illegal, he may not be able to get an order for his reinstatement unless the appointment of respondent No. 5 (Zubair Iqbal) to the post of Managing Director is stalled,” the court said.

The developments that have taken place subsequent to filing of the writ petition have important bearing upon the controversy between the parties and these facts are essential to the determination of the issues raised in this writ petition, the court further said.

“It is not a case where the petitioner (Nengroo) by way of the proposed amended pleadings is contradicting the case set up by him in the original writ petition, but it is a case where the he seeks to bring on record the facts relating to the developments that have taken place after filing of the writ petition”, it observed.

“Acceptance of the instant application” the bench said “does not mean that this court is returning a finding upon the maintainability of the writ petition. It shall be open to the respondents to raise objections to the maintainability of the writ petition while filing their reply to the amended writ petition, which they may do by the next date of hearing.”

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