HIGH COURT OF DELHI
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HIMA KOHLI, J. -
(1.) The present writ petition has been filed by the petitioner workman, praying inter alia for modification of the impugned award dated 24th July, 2004 passed by the Labour Court whereunder it was held that the termination of the petitioner workman was illegal and unjustified, the same being not in compliance with Sections 25-G and H of the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947 (hereinafter referred to as `the Act') and accordingly, compensation of Rs. 10,000 was granted to him in lieu of reinstatement, back wages and all other legal benefits.
(2.) A brief narration of facts is necessary before recording the respective contentions of the parties. The facts as set up by the petitioner in his statement of claim before the Labour Court are that he was engaged as a Beldar on Muster Roll with the respondent, Municipal Corporation of Delhi (for short `MCD') w.e.f. 6th February, 1995 and continued to work as such till 28th October, 1995, without any break, after which his services were terminated and two of his juniors, namely Prema Devi and Inder Jit were appointed. As against his alleged termination, the petitioner workman served the respondent MCD with a legal notice dated 14th November, 1996, but the same was returned by the respondent management. Consequently an industrial dispute was raised which was referred to the Labour Court in the following terms of reference:
"Whether the services of Shri Ashok Kumar Muster Roll Beldar have been terminated illegally and/or unjustifiably by the management, and if so, to what relief is he entitled and what directions are necessary in this respect""
(3.) A statement of claim was filed by the petitioner workman against which the respondent MCD filed its written statement wherein it denied all the averments of the petitioner workman and stated that the workman had worked only for a period of 163 days and that there were breaks in his service. It was also stated that no persons junior to the petitioner had been retained by the respondent MCD. Subsequently, the petitioner workman filed his rejoinder. On 5th June, 2003 the respondent management was proceeded ex-parte as none appeared on its behalf. Thereafter evidence was adduced, where the petitioner workman appeared as WW1 and proved the averments made in his affidavit. On 3rd December, 2002, the respondent management was directed to produce the documents and the application filed by the petitioner workman under Section 11 of the Act. Thereafter it was held by the Labour Court that the respondent MCD had failed to prove the stand taken by it in its written statement and that the workman had stated that he had worked with the respondent MCD from 6th February, 1995 to 28th October, 1995, i.e., for more than 240 days. It was further held that since the services of the workman were terminated in contravention of Sections 25-G and H of the Act, therefore the termination was illegal and unjustifiable. Accordingly the petitioner workman was granted compensation of Rs. 10,000 in lieu of back wages, reinstatement and all other legal benefits admissible to him. Aggrieved by the relief granted to him under the impugned award, the petitioner workman has approached this Court by way of the present petition, seeking modification thereof.;
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