The Supreme Court has overriding public interest can be a reasonable change in the policy of the Government and has to be given due weight while considering the claim of legitimate expectation.The bench comprising Justice L. Nageswara Rao and Justice Hemant Gupta set aside the Kerala High Court judgment As the decision of the Government to the changed policy was to balance the interests of the displaced Abkari workers and a large number of unemployed youth in the State of Kerala, the decision taken on 07.08.2004 cannot be said to be contrary to the public interest. We are convinced that the overriding public interest which was the reason for change in policy has to be given due weight while considering the claim of the Respondents regarding legitimate expectation. We hold that the expectation of the Respondents for consideration against the 25 percent of the future vacancies in daily wage workers in the Corporation is not legitimate.
The principle of procedural legitimate expectation would apply to cases where a promise is made and is withdrawn without affording an opportunity tothe person affected. The imminent requirement of fairness in administrative action is to give an opportunity to the person who is deprived of ofa past benefit. In our opinion, there is an exception to the said rule. If an announcement is made by the Government of a policy conferring benefit on a large number of people, but subsequently, due to overriding public interest, the benefits that were announced earlier are withdrawn, it is not expedient to provide individual opportunities to such innominate number of persons. In other words, in such cases, an opportunity for each individual to explain the circumstances of his case need not be given. In Union of India v. Hindustan Development Corporation and Ors. (supra) it was held that in cases involving an interest based on legitimate expectation, the Court will not interfere on grounds of procedural fairness and natural justice if the deciding authority has been allotted a full range of choice and the decision is taken fairly and objectively.
Note:- We try our level best to avoid any kind of abusive content posted by users. Kindly report to us if you notice any, [email protected]