High Court of Punjab and Haryana, Chandigarh
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Lachhman Dass v. State of Punjab & Ors - CWP-14497-1994  RD-P&H 7757 (25 September 2006)
IN THE HIGH COURT OF PUNJAB AND HARYANA AT CHANDIGARH.
Case No. : C.W.P.No.14497 of 1994
Date of Decision : September 06, 2006.
Lachhman Dass ..... Petitioner
State of Punjab and others ..... Respondents Coram : Hon'ble Mr.Justice P.S.Patwalia
* * *
Present : Ms.Puja Chopra, Advocate
for Mr.C.P.Sapra, Advocate
for the petitioner.
Mr.G.C.Gupta, DAG, Punjab,
for the respondents.
* * *
P.S.Patwalia, J. (Oral) :
The present writ petition has been filed by the petitioner Lachhman Dass who was working as a Registrar in the department of Education in the State of Punjab. After the filing of the writ petition the petitioner has since retired from service on 29.02.1996.
It is the contention of the petitioner that the post of Registrar held by him was higher than that of Establishment Officer and Assistant Registrar. To substantiate this averment he relies upon the provisions of C.W.P.No.14497 of 1994 2
Punjab Education Department (State Service, Class II) Rules, 1965 (hereinafter referred to as the Rules). A perusal of Rule 7 of the Rules show that the post of Registrar is filled up by promotion from amongst the Establishment Officers, Assistant Registrars and Superintendents. The relevant part of Rule 7 is reproduced as hereunder :- "Rule 7 :- Recruitment to the service shall be made - a) in the case of Registrar :-
i) by promotion from amongst the
Establishment Officer or Assistant
Registrar (Examination), Budget
Officer or Superintendents in the
ii) by transfer of Superintendents from
the Punjab Civil Secretariat or from
other `A' Class Offices."
The petitioner submits that prior to the setting up of 3rd Pay
Commission the post of Registrar, Assistant Registrar, Establishment Officers and Budget Officers carried the same pay scale of Rs.825-1580.
The petitioner states that these posts also carried a special pay of Rs.50/-.
The Government of Punjab set up the 3rd
Pay Commission by
notification dated 15.6.1990 inter alia to examine the structure of emoluments and conditions of service of the employees in the State of Punjab and to suggest necessary and feasible pay revisions. The 3rd Pay
Commission submitted its report and recommendations. The same were accepted by State of Punjab and implemented by enacting the Punjab Civil Services (Revised Pay) Rules, 1990. These rules were enforced with effect C.W.P.No.14497 of 1994 3
from 1.1.1986. As a result of acceptance of the recommendations of the 3rd Pay Commission, the pay scale of the post of Establishment Officer was revised from Rs.825-1580 to Rs.2400-4000, in view of specific recommendations made for this category of posts by 3rd Pay Commission.
However in the case of post of Registrar held by the petitioner no specific recommendations were made and in the general pay revision conversion table, the petitioner being Registrar was granted pay scale of Rs.2200-4000.
It is at this stage that a grievance arose to the petitioner on account of the fact that the pay scale of lower post became higher than that of the pay scale of the Registrar, the higher post. The petitioner contends that representations were sent to the State Government by various employees including the petitioner for referring various cases including the case of the petitioner to the anomaly committee. In fact, the Director of Public Instructions (Schools), Punjab conceded that there was anomaly in the case of the petitioner and by his memorandum dated 25.1.1991 made the following observations :-
Name No. of Qualification Mode of Unrevised Revised Pay Recommended Annual of the posts appoint- Scale Scale after scale Rec.Exp post ment the report
|____________________| of 3rd
Registrar i) from ( by promotion ) 825-1580 The scale of The post of 18000 Education Establishment + Rs.50 this category R.E. is filled Department Officers, Spl. Pay has not been from Assistant Assistant revised by the Registrar (Exam) Registrar third Pay Budget Officer,
(Exam), Commission. Supdt.Grade-I
Budget According to by promotion.
Officer, conversion The scale of
Supdt. table the Establishment
Grade-I scale is Officers is
by 2000-3500 revised.
Promotion + 100 spl. 2400-4000 and
pay the scale of
ii) from Punjab had been revised
Civil Secretariat 2200-4000 of the
C.W.P.No.14497 of 1994 4
or other A-class post of . So the
superintendents of the Directorate
by transfer is 3000-4500 of
the post of
Iii) The officer This recommen-
having 4 dation is being
years of made since 1988.
or two years
When no action was taken on this memorandum, reminders were sent by the then Director of Public Instructions (Schools), Punjab on 17.2.1994 and 8.7.1994. Ultimately by a memorandum dated 5.5.1994 the State Government intimated the Education Department that the Government of Punjab has announced the setting up of a new Pay Commission. So all matters of anomalies be referred to the new Pay Commission. It is at this stage that the petitioner approached this Court by way of the present revision petition.
The State Government has filed a reply and it has been stated therein that the pay scale of the post of Establishment Officer working in various departments was further revised keeping in view their duties and responsibilities. It has been stated that it has been decided by the Government to refer the cases regarding removal of anomalies to the newly constituted Pay Commission and hence nothing further could be done at the level of the Government in this regard.
I have heard Ms.Puja Chopra, learned counsel for the petitioner and Mr.G.C.Gupta, learned Deputy Advocate General, Punjab for the respondents.
C.W.P.No.14497 of 1994 5
It is the conceded position before me that post of Registrar is higher post than that of Establishment Officer. An Establishment Officer is eligible for promotion to the post of Registrar. The post of Registrar being a higher post thus also carries higher responsibilities. It has been settled by a Division Bench of this Court in the case of Sunder Lal Jain and others vs.
State of Haryana and others reported as 1995 (1) SLR 215 that a higher post has to be granted a higher pay scale than the lower post. When a lower post is equated with regard to pay scale with the promotional post then it is a clear case of anomaly and irrational. The relevant observations of Division Bench in this regard are as hereunder :- ".... It is totally unreasonable to place a junior post and higher post in the same pay scale. A Division Bench of this Court in Har Kishan & Anr. vs. State of Punjab & Anr. 1987(5) SLR 539, held that "when a lower post is equated with regard to pay scale with the promotional post, it was a clear anomaly and was highly irrational." Another Division Bench of this Court in P.L.Goyal v. State of Haryana & Ors. 1990 (5) SLR, 108, held that "reducing the pay scale on promotion would be violative of Articles 14 and 16 of the Constitution of India." In Civil Writ Petition 10534 of 1991 (Mani Ram & Ors. v. State of Haryana & Ors.) decided by me on September 20, 1993, it was held that "it was legitimate aspiration of every citizen to be better placed, both, in status and pay on promotion and if this is to be frustrated, it will obviously damper the growth of C.W.P.No.14497 of 1994 6
the man which is a natural desire of everyone." If there is no increase in the emoluments of a citizen on his promotion, no one would ever work with zeal and dedication nor would be ever like to acquire better experience and more qualifications. This would result into complete stagnation. The action of the respondents in equating the promotional posts with that of inferior posts in the matter of pay scale would obviously result in restricting the natural aspiration of human being to go higher and higher in his service graph and would, thus, be wholly arbitrary."
Similar view has again been taken by another Division Bench of this Court in the case of Ajit Singh Kalra and others vs. State of Punjab and another reported as 1997 (2) RSJ 720. Yet again a Division Bench of this Court in the case of Sham Lal Saini vs. State of Punjab etc.
(C.W.P.No.11801 of 1993, decided on 18.5.1994) held as hereunder :- "Admitted position which emerges from the pleadings of the parties shows that the post of Administrative Officer has been considered to be a higher post qua the post of Superintendent Grade II. In paragraph Nos.5 and 6 of the reply, the respondents have themselves admitted that anomaly has been created with the issue of notification dated 15.6.1990 whereby pay scale of the post of Superintendent Grade II was revised but similar revision has not been effected for the post of Administrative Officer. When the respondents C.W.P.No.14497 of 1994 7
have themselves realised the fact that an anomalous situation has been created, there is hardly any justification to withhold decision on the enhancement of the pay scale of the Administrative Officer for a period of over one year. In our opinion, when the respondents have themselves found that an anomaly has been created by omission on the part of the competent authority to revise pay scale of the post of Administrative Officer, it would be the duty of the respondents to have taken steps to remove this anomaly. By not doing this, the respondents have clearly discriminated the petitioner in the matter of pay scale.
In the result, the writ petition is allowed, respondents are directed to give benefit of higher pay scale to the petitioner who is holding the post of Administrative Officer by bringing about revision of the pay scale from Rs.2000-3500 to Rs.2200-4000 with effect from the date this grade was given to the holders of the post of Superintendent Grade I."
In view of this clear enunciation of law it is established that grant of lower pay scale to the post of Assistant Registrar and granting a higher pay scale to the post of Establishment Officer, a feeder post to that of Registrar, is a clear case of anomaly and is highly irrational and arbitrary.
In my opinion therefore the petitioner is entitled to higher pay scale that that which was granted to the post of Establishment Officer.
It is for this reason that while recommending the case of the C.W.P.No.14497 of 1994 8
petitioner, the Director of Public Instructions (Schools), Punjab, Chandigarh has recommended the pay scale of Rs.3000-4500 for the post of Registrar.
Under these circumstances the writ petition is allowed. The respondent-State is directed to consider the case of the petitioner for grant of appropriate higher pay scale than that granted to the post of Establishment Officer. The said pay scale shall be granted to the petitioner with effect from 1.1.1986 the date when it was granted to all other employees in the State of Punjab as a result of the acceptance of the recommendations of the 3rd
Pay Commission. However the petitioner shall be entitled to arrears on account of revision of pay scales only for a period of three years and two months prior to the filing of the writ petition. It is clarified that the writ petition was filed on 6.10.1994. The petitioner shall be entitled to appropriate re-fixation of his pay in the revised pay scale from time to time after 1994. The petitioner shall also be entitled for consequential revision of his pensionary benefits. Let these directions be carried out with a period of four months from the date of receipt of a certified copy of this order.
The writ petition stands allowed in the aforementioned terms.
September 06, 2006 ( P.S.Patwalia )
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