Decided on December 15,1955

T.M. DASIUS Appellant
STATE Respondents


- (1.) THIS is a petition under Art. 226 of the Constitution filed by an undergraduate teacher attached to the Little Flower Middle School, cheranalloor in Cochin-Kanayannore Taluk, which at the relevant time was a private and unaided institution, complaining against a service order which denied to him confirmation from earlier date in alleged violation of Art. 52 of the Cochin Education Code.
(2.) THE petitioner T. M. Dasius passed the Secondary School leaving Certificate Examination in 1930 and the Agricultural Training examination from the Government School of Agriculture at Ollukara, Cochin State in 1935. On 6. 12. 1119 corresponding to 21. 7. 1944 petitioner got appointment as an acting teacher in the preparatory class in the present school in which he is employed. After the reopening of the School in 1120 (1945-1946) he was promoted to Form I. He was ever since been working in the lower secondary department, i. e. , Forms I to III in the said school. During the mid-summer vacation in 1119 and 1120 petitioner was not retained in the staff of the school because, according to the manager, the petitioner had not obtained exemption from Secondary Training (Literary Training) from the Government, and he could not consequently be deemed to be a member of the permanent staff. Petitioner applied therefore on 24. 5. 1946 to the Director of Public Instruction, Cochin Government, for necessary exemption but the Director was willing to grant the same for that educational year (1121-1122) only. This order is filed as Ext. A. However in appeal by the petitioner before the Cochin Government, the scope of the exemption was widened so as to cover petitioner's appointment and confirmation in the lower secondary department though not as a head-master of a lower secondary school. This order of Government is produced as Ext. B. Petitioner thereafter on 21. 6. 1949 moved the Director of Public Instruction for approving his appointment as a permanent teacher with effect from 6. 12. 1119, viz. , the date of his first entertainment in the school so as to enable him to get his pay for previous vacations and also condonation of break in service. The Director replied by Ext. D to say that the exemption granted in petitioner's favour under Ext. B order had no retrospective effect but his broken service would be taken into account for granting increments according to existing rules. The petitioner's appeal to Government against this order met with no success - vide Ext. III order dated 19. 8. 1950. Petitioner later on submitted two more petitions to Government dated 13. 3. 1952 and 23. 9. 1954 for reconsideration of the matter but Government refused to interfere. See Ext. E order of Government dated 9. 3. 1955.
(3.) ACCORDING to petitioner, there had been no need at all for him to get exemption, as directed by the Manager in order to get his appointment approved. For under Art. 52 of the Cochin Education Code which had come into force so early as 1109 undergraduate teachers of schools who were trained in industries or agriculture stood exempted from literary training and petitioner was agriculture trained. The vacancy in which he had joined was a permanent one and there was no reason not to treat him as in the permanent cadre from the very beginning of his service. Assuming exemption was necessary at the hands of the Department, there was the Government's own order dated 6. 2. 1953 regarding Private Secondary School Scheme whereby "exemption shall take effect from the date on which the persons have become eligible for the exemption even though the exemption is granted later. " By not treating the exemption granted to him as having taken effect from the date of his first appointment on 6. 12. 1119 petitioner had been deprived of his seniority and service by four years and this has enabled the 3rd respondent Manager of the School to withhold from him payment of vacation salary for 2 months in each year from 1119 to 1123 (1944 to 1948 ). Petitioner has therefore prayed for the issue of a writ of certiorari to the respondents 1 and 2 (the State of Travancore-Cochin and the director of Public Instruction) to quash Exts. A, D and E orders and for declaration that the exemption from Secondary Training granted to him by Ext. B order of Government took effect from the date of appointment as teacher on 6. 12. 1119 and for consequential reliefs. This petition is contested by the respondents. The contention was raised on behalf of the respondents 1 and 2 that the petitioner's claim to be placed on a par with fully trained teachers who had undergone literary training on basis of Art. 52 of the Education Code was unsustainable in view of the revision of the qualifications as embodied in the standing orders issued under the authority of the Government of Cochin. According to these revised rules training in agriculture was not a substitute for secondary training as regards appointment which included also promotions to the lower secondary department. Petitioner's appointment could therefore be only be under the temporary exemption granted and teachers so appointed were not eligible for retention in the staff of the school for vacation. Only after ext. B order in 1124 petitioner was entitled to the benefit of continuity of service. The question was also raised that the provisions of the Education Code or other orders relating to the working of the Education Department were only in the nature of executive directions breach of which could not give any cause of action for relief through Court. In any event the jurisdiction exercised by the Government in service matters of teachers employed in private unaided schools of the type herein was only consensual in character and therefore no remedy could be had by invoking Art. 226 of the Constitution. Objection was also raised that the petition herein was filed without good faith and was also belated and on that ground alone was liable to rejection. By separate counter-affidavit the present manager of the 3rd respondent school has raised also a question of estoppel as against the petitioner.;

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