HC stays suspension of CIO

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Lucknow, Nov 15 (UNI) The Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court today put a stay on the suspension orders of Uttar Pradesh Chief Information Officer (CIO) M A Khan till further orders.

The bench comprising Justices Pradeepkant and Vedpal passed the order on a writ petition filed by senior Advocate S M A Kazmi on behalf of the CIO.

The bench also sought reply from the opposite party within four weeks.

On July 9, 2008, Governor T V Rajeswar had passed suspension orders for Mr Khan after charging him with misusing his powers.

The prosecution had, however, in its petition stated that the Governor can send reference for suspension to the High Court under Section 17 (1) of the Right to Information (RTI) Act, 2005, and also send the same to the Supreme Court under Section 17(2) of the RTI.

The Governor also possesses the right to pass suspension orders when the reference is pending with the SC, but on a condition that the probe against the erring officer has commenced.

However, in his case, the SC issued notice on July 12, 2008, and the probe had also began on the very same day, but the Governor had passsed the suspension of the CIO on July 9, 2008, three days prior.

Mr Khan is scheduled to retire on November 30.

The tenure of the CIO is usually for six years, but the officer has to superannuate on achieving the age of 65 years. Mr Khan would also retire on the very same reason.

UNI XC/JAS SBC GC1848

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