Madras High Court Imposes Costs On Petitioner For Challenging Retirement Policy Notification
The Madras High Court imposed costs on the Petitioner for bringing frivolous litigation by challenging a retirement policy notification dated 25 February, 2021.
The matter titled R. Balamuralidharan v. The Union of India & Ors was placed before the Division Bench of the High Court of Madras, comprising Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice P.D. Audikesavalu challenging the implementation of the notification dated 25 February, 2021 by which a policy decision had been taken by the elected government of the State to increase the retirement age of state government employees from 59 to 60.
The Petitioner contended that the increase in the retirement age was detrimental to the interest of those seeking to obtain government jobs in the State when there was such large-scale unemployment.
However, the bench found that this petition was utterly misconceived and filed only for publicity purposes. The Court further opined that the petition was bare bodied and bereft of any details or material.
The Court also took into account a judgment by a co-ordinate bench of this Court cited as R. Gopinath v. State of Tamil Nadu WP (MD) No.5302 of 2021, wherein a prayer was not granted as it sought interference to a policy decision. It was agreed by the Court that the Courts were slow to interfere in matters of policy since it was the prerogative of the government.
Considering this scenario, the Court chose to impose a cost of Rs. 5000/- on the Petitioner which was directed to be deposited to the Tamil Nadu State Legal Services Authority.
The Court therefore, while dismissing this petition, restrained the Petitioner from bringing any public interest litigation in this court for a period of two years without obtaining the previous leave of the relevant Bench in such regard.