The Rules of The Game Principle VII


The principle of a ‘public servant holding office at pleasure’ of a President or Governor is incorporated in Article 310. See, Roshan Lal Tandon v. Union of India, (1968) 1 SCR 185; Union of India v. Tulsiram Patel, (1985) 3 SCC 398; B.P. Singhal v. Union of India, (2010) 6 SCC 331.


We have no hesitation in holding, observations in Y.V. Rangaiah v. J. Sreenivasa Rao, (1983) 3 SCC 284 are not correct. A review of 15 cases, which have distinguished Rangaiah, would demonstrate, this Court has been consistently carving out exceptions. Rangaiah is impliedly overruled. However, as there is no declaration of law to this effect, it continues to be cited as a precedent and this Court has been distinguishing it. For clarity and certainty, it is, therefore, necessary for us to hold, it is not correct to state: vacancies which occurred prior to Amended Rules would be governed by Old Rules and not by Amended Rules.

The only requirement is, policy decisions of Government must be fair and reasonable and must be justified on touchstone of Article 14.

Hon’ble Justice Pamidighantam Sri Narasimha, State of Himachal Pradesh v. Raj Kumar, [Civil Appeal No. 9746 of 2011].


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