High Court of Punjab and Haryana, Chandigarh
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Birmati Devi v. Administrator, Haryana Urban Development - CWP-4739-2005  RD-P&H 2300 (4 April 2006)
IN THE HIGH COURT OF PUNJAB AND HARYANA AT CHANDIGARH
Date of decision 17.4.2006
Administrator, Haryana Urban Development Authority and another. Respondents
CORAM: HON'BLE MR. JUSTICE M.M. KUMAR
HON'BLE MR. JUSTICE M.M.S.BEDI
PRESENT: Mr. Anand Singh, Advocate for the petitioner Mr. Raman Gaur, Advocate for the respondents M.M.Kumar, J.
This petition filed under Article 226 of the Constitution prays for issuance of direction to the respondents to compensate the petitioner who is widow of workman Jagbir and had died on 2.10.2004. The alternative prayer made is to take any member of the deceased workman in service for apathy on the part of the respondents in complying with the order of this Court dated 19.7.2004 passed in CWP No. 7682 of 2002( Annexure P.1).
Brief facts of the case necessary for disposal of the controversy raised in the instant petition are that Jagbir , deceased, workman raised a dispute and reference no.
86 of 1997/626 of 1998 under Section 10(1) of the Industrial Disputes Act,1947 was made as his services were verbally terminated. The Industrial Tribunal -cum- Labour Court, Panipat in its award dated 20.12.2001 held the workman entitled to reinstatement with continuity of the service with full back wages from the date of the demand notice i.e.
25.7.1996 till the date of reinstatement. The afore-mentioned Jagbir had filed an undertaking before the respondent- HUDA fore-going his claim for full back wages if he was taken back in service. The respondent department after accepting his undertaking had assured him of taking back in service. However, he was not reinstated in service. On the contrary CWP No. 7682 of 2002 challenging the award of the Labour Court dated 20.12.2001 was filed. A Division Bench of this Court upheld the award by observing as CWP 4739 of 2005 2
"Despite the fact that the order of Labour Court setting aside the order of termination of the respondent-workman had attained finality in view of the order passed by the motion bench on 15.7.2002; it emerges from the factual position disclosed to the Court, by the learned counsel representing respondent no.2 that the Haryana Urban Development Authority has still not permitted the respondent workman to assume his duties. This, to our mind, is an act of extreme hardship to the respondent workman at the hands of the Haryana Urban Development Authority. It is not possible for a petty workman to seek redressal of every little grievance from a Court. In view of the award of the Labour Court and the order passed by the motion bench on 15.7.2002, the respondent workman will have to be paid full back wages with effect from the date of the award of the Labour Court i.e.
w.e.f. 20.12.2001. In not allowing the respondent workman to assume his duties, the petitioner management is acting as a matter of total apathy unmindful of the public funds which will have to be incurred in effecting payment as wages to the respondent workman despite the fact that no work is being taken from him. This attitude of the Haryana Urban Development Authority is liable to be depreciated and to ensure that such behavior is not repeated, and petty workman are not put to unnecessary harassment, it is considered just and appropriate to require the Administrator, Haryana Urban Development Authority, to fix responsibility of the officer responsible for not allowing the reinstatement of the respondent-workman, specially with effect from 15.7.2002 when the issue of reinstatement of the workman came to be finalized, when notice was issued by this Court on the limited point of back wages. The officer found responsible shall be liable to pay wages to the respondent workman for the period with effect from 15.7.2002 till the date he is taken back in service." The Division Bench, however, held the petitioner entitled to full back wages in terms of the award and dismissed the writ petition filed by the respondents on 19.7.2004 ( Annexure P.1). The respondents further challenged the order of the Division CWP 4739 of 2005 3
Bench before Hon'ble the Supreme Court and S.L.P. was dismissed on 7.2.2005. The petitioner has claimed that on account of non action on the part of the respondents Jagbir, her husband, suffered illness and died on 2.10.2004 at P.G.I. M.S. Rohtak. Therefore, the claim is made for appointment on compassionate ground or ex-gratia payment of the dues.
In the written statement, the respondents in para 4 had taken the stand that Jagbir Singh joined as Chowkidar on 7.9.2004 in compliance with the orders passed by the Division Bench of this Court on 19.7.2004 subject to the decision of the S.L.P.
pending before Hon'ble the Supreme Court. The amount of back wages amounting to Rs.2,19,959/- has been released to the legal heirs of Jagbir which has been received by the petitioner through cheque No. 008657 dated 16.12.2004. It is thus claimed that there is no delay in permitting the Jagbir, husband of the petitioner to join his duties by asserting that there is no relationship between the death of the petitioner on 2.10.2004 and any alleged in action of the respondents.
We have heard the learned counsel for the parties and are of the view that the award passed by the Labour Court on 20.12.2001 as upheld by this Court in CWP No.
7682 of 2002 decided on 19.7.2004 stands fully complied with. The full back wages have been paid to the petitioner, who is wife of the deceased workman Jagbir. The workman was also permitted to join his duties on 7.9.2004 as on ( Annexure P.5), which is the joining report in pursuance to the order of the respondent authority dated 3.9.2004 ( Annexure P.4). The claim of the petitioner for grant of any compassionate/ ex-gratia payment has to be agitated before the competent authority in accordance with the statutory provisions, rules or instructions because the pleadings in the writ petition do not disclose that any such representation has been made. The petitioner may, if so advised, file a representation with regard to her claim for ex-gratia payment or compassionate appointment in lieu of the death of her husband in respect of any of the dependent of the deceased workman. If any such representation claiming ex-gratia payment or compassionate appointment is made within a period of two months from today, under registered AD cover, then the respondents shall be under an obligation to consider and dispose of the same in accordance with the relevant statutes, rules and instructions. The needful shall be done within a period of four months from the date the representation, as CWP 4739 of 2005 4
afore-said, is received by the respondents.
The writ petition stands disposed of in the above terms.
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