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Haryana withdraws termination of driver over Facebook post

The orders of termination of a driver in Hisar district over his Facebook post against deputy chief minister Dushyant Chautala have been withdrawn.

The Punjab and Haryana high court on Friday disposed of the petition regarding the termination of his services following a Facebook post after financial commissioner (revenue), Haryana government, Sanjiv Kaushal, appeared in court on Friday and withdrew the order.

The sacked driver, Panna Lal, who was a contractual employee with subdivision officer (civil), Hansi, and was terminated from services on December 15, had moved the high court against his sacking. He had said that he was terminated without being afforded an opportunity of personal hearing and without following the principles of natural justice.

The counsel for the petitioner following submission of state government before the high court on Friday raised apprehension that once taken back to service, the services might again be dispensed with after an inquiry. The counsel thus urged the high court that therefore, to prevent a political witch hunt, the inquiry, if any the state wants to conduct, should be conducted outside Hisar district.

However, the court noted this argument and observed it to be premature at this stage since no inquiry has been initiated.

On December 29, the government had admitted to sacking of Panna Lal. It had reasoned that the driver’s conduct and work were not satisfactory as he wrote a post on social media against the deputy chief minister, which is a serious offence. After conducting preliminary inquiry, his service was dispensed with.

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