In the instant case, the Petitioner was a stamp vendor who was duly licensed under the Uttar Pradesh Stamp Rules,1942, but the licensing authority cancelled his license.
Hon’ble Allahabad High Court held that the impugned notice violated the principles of natural justice and should be quashed.
The Petitioner’s stamp vending license was cancelled by the Addl. District Magistrate (Finance & Revenue), Muzaffar Nagar vide order dated 20.03.220 on the ground that a complaint was filed by the Tehsil Bar Association alleging misbehaviour on the part of the Petitioner.
Learned Counsel of the Petitioner argued that the order cancelling the Petitioner’s licence was passed only on the basis of the complaint and a proper enquiry was not conducted nor was the Petitioner given an opportunity to submit his version of events.
It was further submitted that the licensing authority did not consider the reply filed by the Petitioner to the show cause notice.
Observations of the Court
Allahabad High Court observed that the notice issued by the Addl. District Magistrate did not require the Petitioner to show cause concerning the cancellation of his license. Thus, the impugned order breached the natural principles of justice.
It was further observed that as the show cause notice neither mentioned the grounds for necessitating action nor specified what actions will be taken. Therefore, the notice cannot be said to be adequate.
A reference was made to the principle of audi alteram partem according to which the decision-maker is supposed to give prior notice of the proposed decision to a person who will be affected by the decision so that he can make appropriate representation.
Reliance was placed in Mahipal Singh Tomar Vs. State of U.P.& Ors and Keshav Mills Company Ltd. Vs. Union of India & Ors where the aforesaid view was reiterated.
It was also noticed that the Respondent no. 6 has not mentioned any relevant rule that the Petitioner had supposedly broken.
After going through all the averments and facts, the Court held that the order dated 20/03/2020 cannot be sustained and should be quashed.
Accordingly, the writ petition was allowed.
Title: Ravishankar vs State Of U.P & Ors
Case No.: WRIT C No. 17830 of 2020
Date of Order:11.11.2020
Coram: Hon’ble Justice Surya Prakash Kesarwani and Hon’ble Justice Dr Yogendra Kumar Srivastava
Counsel for Petitioner: Atul Kumar
Counsel for Respondent: C.S.C.