Decided on July 24,2007



- (1.) By way of the present writ petition, the petitioner prays for issuance of a writ in the nature of certiorari or any other appropriate writ/ direction for quashing the impugned award dated 31.01.1996, passed by the Presiding Officer, Labour Court, whereunder it was held that the punishment of dismissal from services as imposed on the petitioner by the respondent no. 2 (hereinafter referred to as 'the Management') on the allegation of committing theft of the property of the respondent by the petitioner, was just and proper and that the dismissal of the petitioner from the services of the respondent management is not illegal or unjustified.
(2.) Briefly stated, facts of the case are as follows. The petitioner workman was employed with the management as a Loader since 10.3.1980. On 31.8.1986, when the petitioner workman was returning from duty, he was found to be illegally carrying 30 KLM spoons in his shoes. The petitioner workman admitted his guilt vide letter dated the 31.8.1986 and again on 1.9.1986, the petitioner workman gave a statement in writing, duly signed by him, elaborating the circumstances in which he had stolen the above said 30 KLM spoons in his shoes. On the basis of the said the admission, the management dismissed the workman from service vide notice dated 3.9.1986. As against the said dismissal from service, the petitioner workman made a representation to the management on 4.10.1986 and finally, a legal notice dated 15.10.1986 was served by the petitioner workman on the management wherein he denied the allegations of theft that the management had leveled against him. Conciliation proceedings were initiated thereafter, and on the failure of the same, the petitioner workman raised an industrial dispute which was referred for adjudication in the following terms of reference: "Whether the dismissal of Shri Ashok Kumar Sharma is illegal and/or unjustified and if so, to what relief is he entitled and what directions are necessary in this respect."
(3.) In the statement of claim filed by the petitioner workman, he stated that the management had hatched a conspiracy against him and that he was made to admit the allegation of theft under threat and pressure of the management. After hearing the arguments of the parties and after going through the material placed on record and evidence adduced, the learned Presiding Officer observed that it was an admitted case of both the parties that before dismissal of the workman from service, no charge sheet was issued to the workman by the management nor any show cause notice was issued. The petitioner workman was also not given an opportunity to show cause as to why penalty of dismissal be not imposed on him. The learned Presiding Officer held that though the petitioner workman had admitted his guilt, still his dismissal by the management without issuing any charge sheet or holding a domestic inquiry was contrary to the principle of natural justice as the petitioner workman was not afforded any opportunity of being heard. On that ground, the dismissal of the petitioner workman was held to be contrary to law.;

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