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Tamilnadu Technical Teachers v. Secretary to Government - WRIT PETITION (MD) No.3049 of 2004  RD-TN 2480 (24 July 2007)
BEFORE THE MADURAI BENCH OF MADRAS HIGH COURT
THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE K.CHANDRU
WRIT PETITION (MD) No.3049 of 2004
Tamilnadu Technical Teachers
rep. by its Secretary P.Vellaisamy,
3/97 South Street, Kuruvikarambai-2,
Thanjavur District. .. Petitioner vs.
1.Secretary to Government,
Government of Tamilnadu,
Madras - 9.
2.Director of Elementary Education,
DPI Buildings, College Road,
Nungambakkam, Chennai - 6 .. Respondents Writ Petition filed under Article 226 of the Constitution of India to issue a Writ of Certiorarified Mandamus calling for the records relating to G.O.Ms.No.752 dated 18.10.1996 issued by Education, Science and Technology Department and quash the Clause 3(3) thereof consequently direct the respondents to regularise Craft Teachers working in Government and aided Schools in Tamilnadu as Secondary Grade Teachers from the date of their assuming charge after completing the 3 months Secondary Grade Training Course by duly re- designating them. (Prayer amended as per order of this Court dt.1.12.2006 made in 637/2006).
For petitioner ... Mr. G.R.Swaminathan For respondents ... Mrs.V.Chellammal, Special Government Pleader :ORDER
This Writ Petition is filed by a registered society of Technical Teachers' Association represented by its Secretary. By the amended prayer, the writ petitioner seeks to quash para 3(3) of the G.O.Ms.No.752, Education, Science and Technology Department, dated 18.10.1996 with a consequential prayer to regularise the Craft Teachers working in Government and Aided Schools in Tamilnadu as Secondary Grade Teachers from the date of their assuming charge after completing three months' Secondary Grade Training Course by duly re- designating them.
2. The prayer of such a nature by an Association cannot be entertained by this Court as the said body cannot complain about the validity of the G.O. unless any of the aggrieved teacher is also made as a party in view of the fact that what is urged is the violation of Article 14 of the Constitution.
3. The G.O. impugned in this Writ Petition, provides that the Craft Teachers who have got three months training can be appointed in the Panchayat Union and Aided Middle Schools also be appointed as School Teachers on a full time basis. Nearly 173 persons were identified, who were full time Craft Teachers and those who had passed SSLC Vocational Stream with TTC qualifications will be fitted in the scale of Rs.1200-2040 and those who have failed in SSLC with TTC will be fitted in the scale of pay Rs.950-1500/-. The part-time teachers have been absorbed as full time teachers.
4. It is stated in para 3(3) that since these full time Craft Teachers were not trained in Teacher Education Course, their posts cannot be considered as equivalent to that of the Secondary Grade Teachers and they cannot be promoted to any higher posts as found in the special rules.
5. Originally, G.O.Ms.No.224, Education, Science and Technology Department dated 24.3.1994 provided for conversion of qualified part-time Craft Teachers into full time teachers and they can be absorbed in the Secondary Grade posts on a time scale of pay against the existing vacancies on temporary posts under Rule 10(a)(i) of the General Rules of the Tamil Nadu State and Subordinate services Rules. As it was an executive order, the Director of Elementary Education was directed to send proposals for regularisations of their services in the Secondary Grade posts.
6. Thereafter, the impugned G.O.Ms.No.752, Education, Science and Technology Department, dated 18.10.1996 came to be passed. Subsequent to that G.O., another G.O.Ms.No.243 dated 28.5.1997 has also been passed in which it was stated that if there are any qualified Craft Instructors, on the vacancy of transfer to other services, these teachers can be given the post of Secondary Grade Teachers and necessary amendment to the Tamil Nadu Education Subordinate Service rules should be made. Even that has not been done so far.
7. The grievance of the petitioner's association is that while they have been brought on par with Secondary Grade Teachers with three months' training programme and they are eligible to teach just like the Secondary Grade Teachers, their further promotions are not guaranteed and by that they will stagnate in the same posts for years to come. However, no reason is stated by the petitioner's association for not challenging the G.O. earlier especially when it is already 11 years old. Even though it is stated that there has been representations from the petitioner's association, the same cannot be accepted, because merely sending representations cannot save any limitation. The Writ Petition is liable to be rejected on this ground alone.
8. Thereafter, the learned counsel for the petitioner Mr. G.R.Swaminathan relied upon the judgment of the supreme Court in State of Tripura and others v. K.K.Roy [(2004) 9 Supreme Court Cases 65] stating that the Government being a State within the meaning of Article 12 of the Constitution should create promotional avenues to the persons having regard to the constitutional obligation adumbrated in Article 14 and 16 of the Constitution. However, in the said judgment itself in paras 7 and 8, the Supreme Court has held as follows: Para 7: "We are, thus, of the opinion that the respondent herein is at least entitled to grant of two higher grades, one upon expiry of the period of 12 years from the date of his joining of the service and the other upon expiry of 24 years thereof.
Para 8: "The learned counsel appearing for the appellant, is, however, correct in his submission that the High Court in exercise of its jurisdiction under Article 226 of the Constitution of India could not have issued a writ of or in the nature of mandamus directing the appellant herein to grant a scale of pay which would be equivalent to Grade II or Grade I of the Judicial service of the State."
9. When it was pointed out that the case cited has no application to the facts of the present case, the learned counsel submitted that the petitioner has learnt that it is inequitable to deny any further promotion to the class of full time Craft Teachers who had undergone a period of three months' training and and they are fit to be taught Middle Schools and there is no difference between them and the other Secondary Grade Teachers, and they are also eligible to be promoted to the post of Headmaster of the Primary School. Therefore, the denial will amount to hostile discretion against a set of teachers who are otherwise qualified to be promoted.
10. The learned counsel fairly conceded that the Special Rules have not been amended. By merely attacking the G.O., which is executive in nature, the petitioner cannot overcome the insurmountable difficulties which they will have to undertake in facing the rules relating to the Tamilnadu Educational Subordinate Services as well as Tamil Nadu Recognised Private Schools (Regulation) Act 1973. It is one thing to say that the petitioner has qualification and other thing to say that they are eligible to get promoted viz., they come within the zone of consideration for promotion and that their posts are also declared as a source by which promotions can be made.
11. In this case, the member of the petitioner association have already had the benefit of part-time Craft Teacher's post converted into Full Time Teacher by undergoing three month's training and they have been allowed to teach in the Schools on par with the Secondary Grade Teachers. Despite the same, the State which granted them all the benefits, under the impugned order in para 3(3) said that all the benefits conferred to them by various orders will not entitle them to get promotion as the Government felt as their post is not equivalent to the Secondary Grade Teacher in all respects. By moving this Court, they cannot clothe a power of this Court to go against the rules framed under Article 309 of the Constitution which are legislative in character. This Court cannot examine the nature of syllabus and the tests undertaken by the members of the petitioner' association are equal so as to equate with the Diploma in Education obtained by other Secondary Grade Teachers. If it is the case of Government service then the Special Rules for the Services will have to be amended. In case of Private Schools it is for the Director of School Education who is the competent authority to evaluate any certificate produced by the parties so as to make it equivalent to any other educational qualification certificate. This Court under Article 226 of the Constitution cannot undertake the said exercise and grant the benefit to the petitioner's association.
12. It is significant to note that the Supreme Court in relation to the promotion to the post of Headmasters of High School dealt with a case of P.G.Assistants in the Judgment reported in S.Devasahayam and another v. Joint Director and another [(2004) 9 Supreme Court Cases 77]. The following passage found in the said judgment is extracted below:
Para 1: "...The Appellate Authority held that the appellant was not holding a post as PG Assistant which is the feeder category and, therefore, his appointment as Headmaster was bad and set aside the same. Against that order, the appellant preferred a writ petition before the High Court and the learned Single Judge dismissed the same against which writ appeal was also filed. The concurrent view of the Appellate Authority and learned Single Judge or Division Bench of the High Court is that Respondent 2 is the senior most Postgraduate Assistant and he belongs to the feeder category to the post of Headmaster; that he had been appointed as a Postgraduate Assistant on regular basis and had been holding the post of Assistant Headmaster; that the appellant is not a fully qualified Postgraduate Assistant; that he does not belong to the category of Postgraduate Assistant in academic subject or languages; and that he does not belong to the feeder category at all; that he is not entitled to be promoted as Headmaster ignoring the claim of the second respondent. Para 2: "In order to find out whether the view taken by the High Court and the Tribunal is erroneous, it is necessary to examine the matter with reference to the relevant rules. Rule 15(4)(1)(d) provides that the post of Headmaster could be filled up only from amongst the categories stated therein and they are from the category of: (1) Headmasters of high schools; (2) Postgraduate Assistants in academic subjects; (3) Postgraduate Assistants in languages provided that they possess the prescribed qualifications. It cannot be seriously disputed that the appellant is not a Postgraduate Assistant and he does not come under the feeder category. Merely because he possesses the necessary qualifications by itself will not enable him to claim to be appointed as a Headmaster. It is on this basis the Appellate Authority, the learned Single Judge of the High Court held that the appellant is not entitled to be appointed as the Headmaster." Para 3: "The claim made by the appellant is that he possesses Master's degree in History but he had not undergone the regular course but a condensed course conducted by the Department itself for a period of 10 months and his degree is conferred by way of certificate and such teachers are held to be not in the feeder category so as to become eligible to be appointed as Headmaster. Such arrangement of giving certificates to certain teachers became necessary as there was dearth of postgraduate teachers being avail able in the higher secondary schools such as that of the second appellant. Thus he becomes an inducted teacher and not a regular teacher in the cadre. Bearing these aspects in mind the Appellate Authority as well as the High Court have taken a view, we do not find this matter calls for interference in a proceeding arising under Article 136 of the Constitution."
13. The present case projects more or less same contentions raised before the Supreme Court in the decision cited above and which did not found favour with the Supreme Court.
14. In the absence of State conferring any benefits by amending the rules, this Court under Article 226 of the Constitution cannot undertake such an exercise and grant benefits to the petitioner's association. Challenge to para 3(3) of the G.O.Ms.G.O.Ms.No.752, Education, Science and Technology Department, dated 18.10.1996 is misconceived. Hence, the Writ Petition will stand dismissed. No costs.
1.Secretary to Government,
Government of Tamilnadu,
Madras - 9.
2.Director of Elementary Education,
DPI Buildings, College Road,
Nungambakkam, Chennai - 6.
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