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Arrest Warrant Against Odisha’s Former S&ME Secretary Usha Padhee For Contempt Of Court


02 August 2019

Bikash Sharma


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Cuttack: The State Administrative Tribunal (SAT) has issued bailable arrest warrant against Odisha cadre IAS officer and the then School & Mass Education Secretary Usha Padhee for contempt of court with regard to the alleged irregularities in the recruitment of primary teachers.

Orissa High Court lawyer Somendra Mahapatra informed media, “The verdict pertains to the irregularities during the appointment of primary teachers. Petitioners Rajashree Nayak and Lokanath Kar had filed the case. In 2012, the division bench of State Administrative Tribunal (SAT) had given an order to appoint the two applicants. But, the State Government hadn’t executed any follow-up action. Hence, contempt of court was filed against the then School & Mass Education Secretary Usha Padhee and others.”

He further informed, “The SAT in 2015 had issued arrest warrant. The State Government had challenged it in the Supreme Court and could obtain a stay on this arrest warrant. In April last, the complete trail of this case was held in the division bench court of Chief Justice of Orissa High Court. The stay order was vacated. Thus, the contempt of court case was reopened and on June 28 an order was passed to appoint the two petitioners. It was also ordered that, if not appointed, the then School & Mass Education Secretary should appear before the Tribunal by the last week of July.”

“As no one from the opposite party had appeared yesterday (July 31), the Tribunal has issued bailable arrest warrant against Usha Padhee,” stated the senior lawyer. 

As per reports, the Odisha Government had scrutinized the gradation list up to 617 positions for the appointment of primary teachers under the jurisdiction of Salepur Education District in 1991. However, the two applicants Rajashree and Loknath were exempted from the recruitment despite being placed in 317 and 514 of the list. Alleging scam in the recruitment process, the two aggrieved applicants had moved the SAT.

Notably, the 1996-batch Odisha cadre IAS officer Usha Padhe is the incumbent Joint Secretary of Department of Civil Aviation, Government of India, since August 2015.

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Somendra Mahapatra, Lawyer, Orissa High Court