Ramesh Sanka Vs. Union of India (2019) 3 SCC 589

Author: Vinishalakshmi (SMT.K.G. Shah Law School / SNDT University)


In this present case the appellate (Ramesh Sanka) filed a Writ petition Under Article 32 of Indian Constitution Seeking for the issuance of Writ of Mandamus and CBI’S investigation into allegations against respondent. The petitioner alleged that the activities of Respondent i.e. (a company) had caused significant loss to the public exchequer and warranted prosecution for serval offences. The Respondent i.e. (the Company) countered the petition arguing it lacked bonafides and including personal issues and pending civil suits between the parties. The company denied the allegations and claimed that the petition did not involve any violation of fundamental rights guaranteed under the Indian Constitution. The Case addressed issues related to validity of the Writ Petition the allegations made against the company and the jurisdiction of the court to intervene in the matter. 

Keywords (Minimum 5): Article 32 of Constitution of India, Writ of Mandamus, CBI Investigation, Writ Petition, Public exchequer.


Judgement Cause TitleWRIT PETITION (Crl.) No. 142 of 2018
Case NumberW.P.(Crl.) No.000142/2018
Judgement DateJanuary 25th 2019
CourtSupreme Court
QuorumJustice Abhay Manohar Sapre
AuthorHon’ble Justice Abhay Manohar Sapre & Hon’ble Justice Dinesh Maheshwari
CitationAIRONLINE 2019 SC 28
Legal Provisions InvolvedArticle 32 of the Constitution of India.

In this case the petitioner/ Appellant (Ramesh Sanka) filed a writ petition under Article 32 of the constitution of India seeking relief against Respondent No. 12 (a Company) and others. The Petitioner/ Appellant (Ramesh Sanka) a former employee of Respondent No. 12 (a Company) raised grievances regarding the company’s business operations, financial dealings, and alleged irregularities. The petitioner/ Appellant (Ramesh Sanka) also implicated individuals and entities associated with Respondent No. 12 (a Company) in these matters. The Judgement outlines the proceedings, including responses from the respondent (a Company), arguments presented by all parties, and the court’s assessment of the case. Additionally, the Judgment addresses legal issues regarding the jurisdiction of Article 32 the nature of relief sought, and the appropriate forum for resolving disputes of this nature.

  1. Writ of Mandamus:

The Latin Phrase “Writ of Mandamus” [1] means “We Command”. This Writ is used by the court to order public official who has failed to perform his duty or refused to do his duty, to resume his work. Besides public officials, Mandamus can be issued against any public body, corporation, an inferior court, a tribunal, or government for the same purpose. Only the High Court and Supreme Court in India have the authority to issue Writs. Article 226 of the Indian Constitution grants the High Courts the authority to issue Writs, and Article 32 of the Indian constitution grants the Supreme Court the Authority to do so.

Facts abouts Writ of Mandamus:

  • Mandamus cannot be issued against a private individual.
  • Mandamus cannot be issued in the following cases:
  • To enforce departmental instruction that does not possess statutory force.
  • To Order someone to work when the kind of work is discretionary and not mandatory.
  • To enforce contractual Obligations.
  • Mandamus can’t be issued against the Indian President or State Governors.
  • Against the Chief Justice of a High Court acting in a Judicial capacity.
  • The Writ Petition was brought to the attention of the Supreme Court initially limited to Specific Official Respondents (Respondent Nos. 7to 11) (Company), who submitted a status report in a sealed cover.
  • Respondent No.12 (a Company) made an appearance and submitted a petition requesting the dismissal of the Writ Petition on legal and factual grounds, alleging that it was not genuine and driven by personal motives. They argue that the petitioner, is attempting to resolve a personal matter through former employee aims to settle personal the petition.
  • The Petitioner (Ramesh Sanka) denies these allegations, ascertaining that there has been no suppression of material facts.
  • Several individuals and Organisations filed applications seeking remedies against Respondent No. 12 ( a Company) regarding their dealings with the company.
  • After Considering all parties involved, the Supreme Court declines to grant relief under Article 32. It states that the Article 32 is not the appropriate remedy for disputes arising from personal contractual rights between an employee and an employer. Such grievances should be addressed through civil suits or other civil law remedies.   
  • The Court emphasizes that the ongoing civil suits between the parties should be pursued in accordance with the law.
  • The Court acknowledges that the Official respondents (Company) are conducting inquiries in their respective jurisdictions, and appropriate action will be taken based on the outcomes of these inquiries.
  • The Court dismisses the Writ Petition and Clarifies that its decision does not impact the ongoing inquiries or proceedings. It also dismisses various applications seeking relief against Respondent No. 12 (Company), directing applicants to pursue their grievances through appropriate judicial forums.
  • Whether the Petitioner/Appellant’s (Ramesh Sanka) Writ Petition under Article 32 of the Constitution of India warrants the issuance of a Writ of Mandamus or any other Writ directing the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to investigate the allegations against Company (Respondent No.12)?
  • Whether the dealings and activities highlighted by the petitioner (Ramesh Sanka) regarding Company i.e. (Respondent No. 12) have caused significant losses to the public exchequer and rendered those involved liable for prosecution under various Acts?
  • Whether the allegations made by Mr. Ramesh Sanka against the Respondent No. 12 to 22(Company) are substantial and necessitate investigation by the CBI?
  • Whether the pendency of Civil Suits between the Petitioner/ Appellant (Ramesh Sanka) and Respondent no. 12 (Company) affects the validity or consideration of the Writ Petition under Article 32?
  • Whether the pendency of Civil suits between the petitioner (Ramesh Sanka) and Respondent No. 12(Company)affects the validity or consideration of the Writ Petition under Article 32?
  • The counsels for Petitioner / Appellant submitted that the Petitioner or Appellant was the CEO of Respondent NO. 12 was a limited company working from June 2014 to December 2016. His grievances primarily concern the conduct of Respondent No. 12 and its management. He alleges that the company through its directors and employees has engaged in various financial irregularities in its business dealing both domestically and intentionally.
  • According to Petitioner/ Appellant these financial irregularities have violated numerous ACTS, Rules, and regulations. Despite his efforts to bring these matters to the attention of statutory authorities through complaints and representations they have gone unnoticed. Therefore, Ramesh Sanka (The Petitioner/Appellant) contends that there is a compelling need for investigation into the activities of Respondent NO.12(Company) to uncover the alleged misconduct and ensure accountability for their actions.
    • The counsels for Respondent submitted that On July 11th 2018 the court issued notice of the Writ Petition but limited it to Official respondent, Specifically Respondent No. 7 to 11. These respondents have submitted a status report, which was filed in a sealed cover. Additionally, one Official respondent has filed an Affidavit.
    • The Respondents, represented by Respondent No. 12 Company argues against the petition’s validity. They claim that the Writ Petition Lacks bonafide and is motivated by Personal Issues rather than genuine concerns for Public Interest. Respondent No.12 asserts that the petition is an attempt by a former employee to settle personal dispute with the company, noting the existence of civil suits between the parties. Furthermore, they allege that the petitioner has suppressed crucial facts in the petition, including the ongoing civil suits, and assert that the petition is filed with Ulterior Motives to tarnish (damage) the company’s image in the market. Additionally, the respondents argue that the Petition does not involve any violation of Fundamental Rights Guaranteed under the Constitution of India. They deny all allegations made by the Petitioner, deeming them baseless.
    • “Article 32 of the constitution of India (Right to Constitutional remedies”): It is a fundamental right which states that individuals have the right to approach the Supreme Court (SC) seeking enforcement pf other fundamental rights recognised by the constitution.  
    •  The Legal Provisions relevant to this case include Article 32 of Indian Constitution – Allows Individuals to seek enforcement of fundamental rights through writ petition before supreme court. Additionally, the judgment refers to the jurisdiction of the civil court for adjudicating disputed related to contractual rights and civil law remedies available to parties in such case.

The Hon’ble Court has emphasized its intention to thoroughly review whether Ramesh Sanka has established a prima facie case of illegal activity that would justify a CBI investigation against company (Respondent No. 12) taking into account the appropriateness of CBI’s involvement and exhaustion of other available remedies. The Court will examine evidence of substantial losses to the public exchequer allegedly caused by company’s actions, which could result in liability under relevant laws. The court will assess the gravity of the allegations against the company in conjunction with the need for CBI intervention, balancing public interest and the existing redressal mechanisms. Although the presence of ongoing civil suits involving the parties does not render the Writ Petition under Article 32 invalid, the court will analyze the overlap of issues, the stage of proceedings, and alternative remedies before proceeding. The court’s decision on the validity and considerations of the Writ Petition will be influenced by judicial economy and the adequacy of civil remedies.

Lalita Kumari Vs. Government of Uttar Pradesh (2014) 2 SCC 1:

In this case, the Supreme court of India laid down guidelines regarding the registration of FIRs by police authorities. It held that when information about the commission of a cognizable offence is received, the police must register an FIR,[2] subject to certain exceptions. The court emphasised that the discretion of the police to conduct a preliminary inquiry before registering an FIR should not be used as a tool to avoid their duty to investigation. The judgment underscores the importance of promptly initiating investigation into allegations of illegal activity to ensure effective enforcement of the law. This case provides a framework for assessing the necessity of CBI intervention in cases where prima facie evidence suggests wrongdoing, aligning with the considerations highlighted in the scenario. 


In conclusion, that court states that it has not expressed any opinion on the various factual issues alleged and denied by the parties in the Writ Petition and related applications. It emphasis that its order will not influence any ongoing inquiries or proceedings which must be handled impartially.

The court decides that it is unnecessary to entertain the numerous applications filed by different parties seeking relief against Respondent No. 12 (Company). Instead, it grants the applicants the freedom to pursue their grievances individually or collectively before an appropriate judicial forum in accordance with the law. With these considerations, the court finds no merit in the petitioner (Mr. Ramesh Sanka’s) Writ petition and dismisses it accordingly.

    • Important Cases Referred
      • State of Uttaranchal Vs. Balwant Singh Chaufal & Ors. (2010 (3) SCC 402).
      • K.D. Sharma Vs. Steel Authority of India Ltd. & Ors. (2008(12) SCC 481).
      • Arun Kumar Agrawal Vs. Union of India & Ors. (2014(2) SCC 609).
      • Lalita Kumari Vs. Government of Uttar Pradesh (2014) 2 SCC 1.
    • Important Statutes Referred
      • The Constitution of India

The Companies Act 2013 by Avatar Singh

[1] “Writ of Mandamus” Important case law –

  • Sohanlal Vs. Union of India (1957).
  • Rashid Ahmad Vs. Municipal Board (1950).
  • Sharif Ahmad Vs. HTA Meerut (1977).
  • SP Gupta Vs. Union of India (1981).
  • C.G. Govindan Vs. The State of Gujarat (1991).

[2] “Lalita Kumari Vs. Government Of Uttar Pradesh (2014) 2 SCC 1.

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