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Rajasthan State Road Transport Corporation Vs. Judge Labour Court Rajasthan and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectLabour and Industrial
CourtRajasthan High Court
Decided On
Case NumberS.B. Civil Writ Petition No. 1396 of 1976
Judge
Reported in1977WLN(UC)82
AppellantRajasthan State Road Transport Corporation
RespondentJudge Labour Court Rajasthan and ors.
DispositionPetition dismissed
Cases ReferredHindnston Steel Ltd. v. The Presiding Officer Labour Court and Ors.
Excerpt:
.....the learned labour court. the dispute that was referred to it was in respect of the order of the depot manager, udaipur which is no other than the order dated 22nd january, 1973.;the proper course for the corporation was to move the state government for modification of the dispute as the court could not but confine its adjudication to the points specified in the referent vide section 10(4) of the industrial disputes act, 1947. the leaned curt therefore, has committed no error answering precisely the question that was referred to it.;writ dismissed - - he made a failure report to the state government which by its order dated 26th may, 1974, made a reference in hindi which rendered it. it furl her failed lo take note of the order of 31st july, 1973, by which the services were extended..........regional manager, jodhpur. this order was not communicated earlier than 22nd january, 1973 to the depot manager udaipur who removed him on that date. upon the advice of the deputy general manager, the regional managtr, jodhpur made an order on 31st july, 1973, cancelled the order of. 22nd january, 1973, and extended the term of his appointment upto august 15, 1973. it was, however, directed that the services shall automatically cease on expiry of the term so granted to him. the state road transport corporation employees union, kota espoused the cause of the respondent and the matter was taken before the conciliation officer. he made a failure report to the state government which by its order dated 26th may, 1974, made a reference in hindi which rendered it. english stands as.....
Judgment:

M.L. Jain, J.

1. This writ petition is directed against the award of the Labour Court, Rajasthan, Jaipur, dated 29th May, 1975. The responds it Ghanshyam Singh Ranawat was appointed for a period of two months by the Regional Manager as a conductor during the peak season in the Abu Road Depot, and later on came to be transferred to Udaipur depot. The appointment was absolutely ten porary and the services could be terminated without notice. The turn of appointment was extended up to 31st July, 1972 by an order dated 30th June, 1972. But his services were terminated on 31st October, 1972 by the Regional Manager, Jodhpur. This order was not communicated earlier than 22nd January, 1973 to the Depot Manager Udaipur who removed him on that date. Upon the advice of the Deputy General Manager, the Regional Managtr, Jodhpur made an order on 31st July, 1973, cancelled the order of. 22nd January, 1973, and extended the term of his appointment upto August 15, 1973. It was, however, directed that the services shall automatically cease on expiry of the term so granted to him. The State Road Transport Corporation Employees Union, Kota espoused the cause of the respondent and the matter was taken before the Conciliation Officer. He made a failure report to the State Government which by its order dated 26th May, 1974, made a reference in Hindi which rendered it. English stands as follows:

Whether the termination of the services of Shri Ghanshyamsingh Ranawat (who is represented by the Secretary, Rajasthan State Road Transport Corporation, Employees Union Branch Kota), without payment of wages i.e. arrears of pay, wages for paid holidays and for work king on lest days, by the Depot Manager, Rajasthan State Road Transport Corporniton Udaipur in pursuance of the directions of the Regional Depot Manager Rajasthan State Road Transport Corporation, Jodhpur. If not, to what relief was the employee entitled.

2. The Labour Court held that the order of 22nd January, 1973, by which the services were terminated (by the Depot Manager, Udaipur) has been cancelled. In such circumstance, the petitioner was entitled to reinstatement as the respondent Roadways had not alleged in its reply that the petitioner's services were again terminated on 15th August, 1973. The reference was answered that the petitioner's removal from service, by an Older dated 27th January, 1973. was illegal and invalid and he was entitled to reinstatement with full back wages. It is against this award that the present petition has been filed by the Corporation.

3. The contention of the Roadways is that the petitioner remained in service from 11th April 1972 to 15th August, 1973 but the services being temporary could be terminated without any notice or wag's in lieu thereof at the time of termination of service as provided in the Certified Standing Orders of the Rajasthan State Road Transport Corporation. It was urged that the; learned Labour Court did not discuss the impact or the Standing Orders. It furl her failed lo take note of the order of 31st July, 1973, by which the services were extended upto 11th August, 1973, on which date they were directed to terminate automatically.

4. The learned Counsel for the respondent, however, submitted that this was a case of 'retrenchment' within Clause (oo) of Section 2 of the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947. 'Retrenchment' means the termination of the employer of the services of a workmen for any reason whatsoever otherwise than as a punishment inflicted by way of disciplinary action. According to Section 25F of the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947 no workmen who has been in continuous service for not less than one year, shall be retrenched until the workmen has been given one month's notice in writing indicating the reasons for retrenchment and the period of notice has expired or the workman has been paid in lieu of such notice wages for the period of notice, provided that such notice shall be necessary if the retrenchment is under an agreement which specifies a date for the termination of service and the workman has been paid at the time of retrenchment compensation which shall be equivalent to 15 days average pay for every completed year of continuous service or any part thereof in excess of six months and notice in the prescribed manner is served n the appropriate Government or such authority as may be specified by the appropriate Government by notification in the official gazette. It was also urged that the Standing Orders made under the Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Act, 1946 cannot prevail over the provisions of Section 25F of the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947, Reference was also made to Hindnston Steel Ltd. v. The Presiding Officer Labour Court and Ors. : (1977)ILLJ1SC . It was held in this case that even where the termination was automatic on expiry of the contractual period of service, it amounts to retrenchment, because the definition of retrenchment means termination of service for any reason whatsoever other than a punishment inflicted by way of disciplinary action Termination embraces not merely the act of termination but the fact of termination howsoever produced. A pre-emptive provision to terminate is struck by the same vice as the post appointment termination It was urged that the impugned order of the Labour Court could be defended on the basis that the services could not be terminated without compliance of Section 25F and the respondent shall be deemed in service.

5. I have considered. To my mind, the Standing Orders cannot prevail over the provisions of Section 25F of the Industrial Disputes Act, but this aspect was not examined be the Labour Court. Whether the order of termination is invalid on account of the non-compliance of the said provisions of Section 25F is also a question which was not answered by the Labour Court, for did it consider whether the termination of services was nothing if not retrenchment. But both these matters were not required Jo be examined by the learned Labour Court. The dispute that was referred toil was in inspect of the order of the Depot Manager, Udaipur which is no other than the order dated 22nd January, 1973, vide Annexure 4. Admittedly this order was, as also held by the Labour Court superseded by the order dated 31st July, 1973, of the 'Regional Manager, Jodhpur, vide Annexure 8 and so the court was not called upon to adjudicate upon this last order in the series. Nothing was mentioned about it in the reply of the petitioner, vide Annexure 11. The proper course for the Corporation was to move the State Government for modification of the dispute as the Court could not but confide his adjudication to the points specified in the reference vide Section 10(4) of the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947. The learned Court therefore, has committed no error in answering precisely the question that was referred to it. The petition is consequently dismissed but without any order as to costs.


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