P.T. Raman Nair, C.J.
1. The certified Standing Order fixing the age of superannuation at 55 was not questioned in the industrial dispute. What was questioned was its applicability to the particular workman concerned. K.K. Raghavan, and this was on the score that he was already in service having been appointed in 1961 when the Standing Order came into force in 1964. Now it is quite clear from the decision of the Supreme Court in Agra Electric Supply Co. v. Alladin 1969 II L.L.J 540. which is on all fours with the present case that a Standing Order applies to all workmen in service whether appointed before or after it was made, and the earlier decisions of the Supreme Court relied upon by the learned single Judge namely, Guest, Keen, Williams Ltd. v. Sterling and Ors. 1959 II L.L.J. 405 and Workmen of Kettle-well Bullen & Co. v. Kettlewell Bullen & Co. 1964 II L.L.J. 146 were distinguished by their Lordships in the light of the Supreme Court decision in Salem-Erode Elecy. Distribution Co. v. Their Employees' Union, 1966 I L.L.J. 443. It follows that the award made by the Labour Court to the effect that the Standing Order in question did not apply to K.K. Raghavan and that he should be reinstated although he was well past the age of 55-in fact he was 63 at the time of the award-is vitiated by an error of law apparent on the face of the record, and that the writ petition brought by the employer to quash the award ought to have been allowed instead of being dismissed.
2. We allow this appeal by the employer, set aside the dismissal of the writ petition, and quash the award. No costs.
3. We are glad to record that notwithstanding his success the employer has, out of commendable generosity to a former workman in straitened circumstances told us that he will make an ex gratia payment of Rs. 1000 to the workman, K.K. Raghavan.