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BUDDHI RAM PRASAD versus PRESIDING OFFICER, CENTRAL GOVT. INDUSTRIAL TRIBUNAL & ORS.

High Court of Judicature at Allahabad

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Buddhi Ram Prasad v. Presiding Officer, Central Govt. Industrial Tribunal & Ors. - WRIT - A No. 2667 of 2006 [2006] RD-AH 969 (16 January 2006)

 

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HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE OF ALLAHABAD

                                                                                                       Court no.7

                  Civil Misc. Writ Petition No. 2667 of 2006

Budhi Ram Prasad            Versus         the Presiding Officer and others

Hon'ble Rakesh Tiwari,J.

Heard counsel for the parties and perused the record.

The petitioner was employed as Agricuture Assistant in Bank of India, Naya Bazar Branch, District Bhadohi in November, 1988. He submitted an application for medical leave enclosing therewith the Medical Certificate and pathological test on 3.10.2002 to respondent no.2, the Zonal Manager, Bank of India. He further submitted an application for medical leave alongwith medical certificate to respondent no.3, the Branch Manager, Bank of India but he vide letter dated 11.12.2002 expressed doubt on the authenticity of the medical certificates submitted by the petitioner.  The Branch Manager accordingly cancelled the medical leave of the petitioner and directed him for medical check up  by a Doctor appointed by the Bank.

The petitioner did not present himself for medical examination before the Doctor of the Bank and he was also not found at his residence when the Bank's Doctor along with the officers of the Bank visited the petitioner's residence for his medical examination on the appointed time and date .In the circumstances, by order dated 25.3.2003 it was ordered that leave period of the petitioner would be taken as unauthorized absence from duty w.e.f. 3.10.2003 onwards.

It appears from Annexure-1 to the writ petition that the disciplinary enquiry was conducted and the petitioner was given show cause notice as to why he should not be compulsorily retired from service under paragraph 6 (c) of the Bipartite settlement dated 10.4.2002. It also appears that neither the petitioner participated in the enquiry nor availed of the personal opportunity of hearing afforded to him by the bank.

The petitioner raised an industrial dispute, which has been referred to Central Government-cum- Industrial Tribunal, Lucknow where it was registered as I.D. Case no. 95 of 2004.

The grievance of the petitioner in the writ petition is that the Court is not proceeding expeditiously in the matter and as such the petitioner has prayed for a direction commanding the Industrial Tribunal to decide the dispute i.e. I.D. Case No. 95 of 2004, Budhi Ram Prasad Vs. Bank of India in accordance with law within a reasonable course of time.

The Central Government has framed the Industrial Disputes (Central) Rules, 1957 in exercise of the powers conferred by Section 38 of the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947. Rule 10-B has been substituted under the aforesaid Rule by G.S.R.932, dated 18th August, 1984 providing specific time for each stage of dispute.

Rule 10-B is as under:-

10-B. Proceeding before the Labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal- (1) While referring an industrial dispute for adjudication to a labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal, the Central Government shall direct the party raising the dispute to file a statement of claim complete with relevant documents, list of reliance and witnesses with the labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal within fifteen days of the receipt of the order of reference and also forward a copy of such statement to each one of the opposite parties involved in the dispute.

          (2) The labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal after ascertaining that copies of statement of claim are furnished to the other side by party raising the dispute shall fix the first hearing on a date not beyond one month from the date of receipt of the order of reference and the opposite party or parties shall file their written statement together with documents, list of reliance and witnesses within a period of 15 days from the date of first hearing and simultaneously forward a copy thereof to the other party.

           (3) Where the labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal, as the case may be, finds that the party raising the dispute though directed did not forward the copy of the statement of claim to the opposite party or parties, it shall give direction to the concerned party to furnish the copy of the statement to the opposite party or parties and for the said purpose or for any other sufficient cause, extend the time-limit for filing the statement under sub-rule (1) or written statement under sub-rule (2) by an additional period of 15 days.

           (4) The party raising a dispute may submit a rejoinder if it chooses to do so, to the written statement(s) by the appropriate party or parties within a period of fifteen days from the filing of written statement by the latter.

           (5) The labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal, as the case may be, shall fix a date for evidence within one month from the date of receipt of the statements, documents, list of witnesses, etc. which shall be ordinarily within sixty days of the date on which the dispute was referred for adjudication.

            (6) Evidence shall be recorded either in Court or on affidavit but in the case of affidavit the opposite party shall have the right to cross-examine each of the deponents filing the affidavit. As the oral examination of each witness proceeds, the labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal shall make a memorandum of the substance of what is being deposed. While recording the evidence the labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal shall follow the procedure laid down in rule 5 of Order XVIII of the First Schedule to the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 ( 5 of 1908).

          (7) On completion of evidence either arguments shall be heard immediately or a date shall be fixed for arguments/oral hearing which shall not be beyond a period of fifteen days from the close of evidence.

         (8) The labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal, as the case may be, shall not ordinarily grant an adjournment for a period exceeding a week at a time but in any case not more than three adjournments in all at the instance of the parties to the dispute.

         Provided that the labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal, as the case may be, for reasons to be recorded in writing, grant an adjournment exceeding a week at a time but in any case not more than three adjournments at the instance of any one of the parties to the dispute.

         (9) In case any party defaults or fails to appear at any stage the labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal, as the case may be, may proceed with the reference ex parte and decide the reference application in the absence of the defaulting party:

         Provided that the labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal, as the case may be, may on the application of either party filed before the submission of the award revoke the order that the case shall proceed ex parte, if it is satisfied that the absence of the party was on justifiable grounds.

          (10) The labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal, as the case may be, shall submit its award to the Central Government within one month from the date of oral hearing/arguments or within the period mentioned in the order of reference whichever is earlier.

        (11) In respect of a reference under Section 2-A, the labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal, as the case may be, shall ordinarily submit its awards within a period of three months.

          Provided that the labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal may, as and when necessary, extend the period of three months and shall record its reasons in writing to extend the time for submission of the award for another specified period."

The counsel for the petitioner states that counter and rejoinder affidavits in the aforesaid case have been exchanged and the evidence has also been recorded  and the  industrial dispute  is ripe for hearing by the  CGIT.

Sub-rules 7 and 8 of the aforesaid Rule clearly provide that on completion of evidence either arguments shall be heard immediately or a date shall be fixed for arguments/oral hearing which shall not be beyond a period of fifteen days from the close of evidence and the Tribunal shall not ordinarily grant an adjournment for a period exceeding a week at a time but in any case not more than three adjournments in all at the instance of the parties to the dispute. Sub-Rule 9 provides that in case any party defaults or fails to appear at any stage the labour Court, Tribunal or National Tribunal, as the case may be, may proceed with the reference ex parte and decide the reference application in the absence of the parties.

            Thus, the time limit and the manner for proceeding with the adjudication of the dispute have been given in the rules.  No direction is required to be given under Article 226 of the Constitution and the prayer of the petitioner is wholly misconceived.  If there is any delay in hearing, the petitioner may move an application before the Industrial Tribunal under the aforesaid rules for expedite hearing of the matter. The petition is thus wholly misconceived.

For the reasons stated above, the writ petition is dismissed on the ground of alternative remedy.

Dated 16.1.2006

CPP/-


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Reproduced in accordance with s52(q) of the Copyright Act 1957 (India) from judis.nic.in, indiacode.nic.in and other Indian High Court Websites

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