The Hon’ble Supreme Court, on 6th December 2019, in the matter of The State Of Bihar & Ors. v. Phulpari Kumari pronounced that sufficiency of evidence in a departmental inquiry is not within the realm of judicial review. Courts can interfere only in case of “no evidence”.
The Hon’ble Supreme Court observed that:
Interference with the orders passed pursuant to a departmental inquiry can be only in case of ‘no evidence’. Sufficiency of evidence is not within the realm of judicial review. (Para 6)
The standard of proof as required in a criminal trial is not the same in a departmental inquiry. Strict rules of evidence are to be followed by the criminal Court where the guilt of the accused has to be proved beyond reasonable doubt. On the other hand, preponderance of probabilities is the test adopted in finding the delinquent guilty of the charge. (Para 6)
Copy of judgement: Judgement_06-Dec-2019
-Adv. Tushar Kaushik