WORKMEN OF HARRISON AND CROSFIELD LTD Vs. HARRISONS AND CROSFIELD LTD
HIGH COURT OF KERALA
WORKMEN OF HARRISON AND CROSFIELD LTD BY COCHIN
HARRISONS AND CROSFIELD LTD
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(1.) THIS is a petition under Article 226 of the Constitution by the Cochin Commercial Employees' Association, Cochin, representing the workmen of the Cochin branch office of Harrisons and Crosfield, Ltd. , Quilon. The petitioner seeks to quash an award, Ex. P. 4, dated 10 September 1966, passed by respondent 4, the industrial tribunal, Alleppey, in Industrial Dispute No. 14 of 1962, in so far as the award provides for the scaling down of gratuity payable to the workmen. Respondent 1 is the employer :and respondents 2 and 3 are two trade unions representing other workmen employed in the office of respondent 1 under the Quilon branch.
(2.) IN 1961, the petitioner placed a charter of demands before respondent 1. The dispute was settled between the parties as per an agreement, Ex. P. 1, dated 25 July 1931. Two issues were left open, one relating to revision of basic salary and fitment, and the other relating to gratuity. It was agreed that these issues would be settled by further conciliation, and that the existing gratuity schema would be continued, pending final settlement on the question of gratuity. But these issues could not be settled, as the petitioner was not prepared to scale down the gratuity rates, while respondent 1 was not prepared to consider the question of increasing th3 wages without scaling down the gratuity. Respondents 2 and 3 had also madia several demands. By an order dated 2d June 1962, the Government of Kerala referred twelve issues for adjudication by respondent 4. Issue 1 is "revision of salary" and gratuity is not one of the issues referred for adjudication. Shortly before the above order was passed, respondent 1 entered into an agreement, Ex. P. 2, dated 23 May 1962, with respondent
(3.) SETTLING all disputes, except the one relating to bonus. This agreement settled the' question of gratuity also. Workmen, who were not represented by respondent 3, began to accept Ex. P. 2 individually, with the result that a large majority of the workmen in the employment of respondent 1 accepted the settlement thereunder. On the basis of the above fact, respondent 1 raised a preliminary objection to the maintainability of the reference on the ground that there was no industrial dispute. During the pendency of the adjudication, a conciliation settlement was effected on 26 March 1965 between respondent 1 on the one part and respondents 2 and 3 on the other part. A copy of this settlement forms part of annexure A to Ex. P.;
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