Virbhadra opposes abolition of HP Administrative Tribunal

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Shimla, Jul 12 (UNI) Former Himachal Pradesh chief minister Virbhadra Singh today opposed the state government's decision to abolish the HP Administrative Tribunal, saying it was against its election manifesto wherein it had promised not only to strengthen it but to also set up its permanent benches at Mandi and Dharamshala.

The immediate reason for abolition of Administrative Tribunal, it appears, was that the Chief Minister was annoyed by a large number of stays given by the Administrative Tribunal to the government employees after the new government assumed office, he said in a release here.

''Ever since this government assumed office, there has been a flood of transfers in which thousands of government employees have been shifted from one place to another on political considerations,'' he said.

When a large number of transfers were effected in violation of its own transfer policy, the tribunal or any court was bound to take cognisance and give relief to the affected employees, he said.

He said the tribunal was set up in 1986 by the Congress Government to hear service matters and give relief to the employees and added that it had functioned, by and large, to the satisfaction of the employees and the state government.

''The abolition of the tribunal is bound to hurt the interests of the employees who will now have to approach the HP High Court from far flung areas of the state for the redressal of their grievances,'' he added.

The former chief minister said the Congress under no circumstances would welcome the government's decision, which had been taken ''in haste and to satisfy the personal ego'' of the Chief Minister.

''The decision is against the interests of the state and taken without consulting anyone,'' Mr Singh added.

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