THE DEPOT MANAGER, A.P.S.R.T.C., BAIKATPURA HYDERABAD Vs. K. BRAHMANANDHAM AND OTHERS
HIGH COURT OF ANDHRA PRADESH
The Depot Manager, A.P.S.R.T.C., Baikatpura Hyderabad
K. Brahmanandham And Others
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A.D.V. Reddy, J. -
(1.) The point that arises for consideration in this petition concerns the meaning and scope of the term 'Minimum Salary' and arises under the following circumstances.
(2.) The Petitioners (claimants) in this case were first employed by the Road Transport Corporation at the Baikatpura depot as 'casual drivers' in 1965 and later from 1-2-66 onwards as "Retainers ' on a consolidated retainer fee of Rs. 30/- p. m. As per the terms of employment, in the event of each of them performing duty as a Driver he will be paid at the rate of the difference between the retainer fee of Rs. 80/- and the minimum salary of a driver Gr. II. The other term with which we are not now concerned, is that they will be eligible to a night out allowance if he proceeds on duty as a driver on a night-out service. The salary of Gr. 11 driver was Rs. 100/- dearness allowance of Rs. 55. H. R. A. of Rs. 10/- and washing allowance Rs. 22/-. Whenever they worked as drivers they have been paid the difference between the retainer fee of Rs. 80/- and the total emoluments of Gr. II driver including D. A and other allowances from February, 1966 to August 1966 and there-after the allowances were not taken into account in calculation of the difference and instead the management started collecting from them at the rate of Rs. 10/- per month towards the overpayment already made for previous months in pursuance of a clarification issued by the General Manager, State Road Transport Corporation stating that they are entitled only to the difference between the retainer fee and the basic salary without allowances. Eight of the retainers therefore filed a petition before the Authority under the Payment of Wages Act under Section 15 (3) of the Payment of Wages Act for the repayment of the monies deducted and for further directions to pay them the difference as calculated on the salary inclusive of all the allowances, hereafter. The Authority on enquiry upheld their claim and on appeal under Section 17 of the Payment of Wages Act, the Chief Judge, City Civil Court, confirmed the order of the Authority under the Payment of Wages Act and hence this revision petition by the management i.e., the State Road Transport Corporation
(3.) The order of appointment of the Retainers, as already stated, says that they will be paid a consolidated retainer fee of Rs. 80/- per month and their duty was to work in the place of a regular driver who may not be available for service and in any other capacity that may be deemed fit by the depot manager, and in the event of his performance as a driver the Petitioner will be paid the difference between the retainter fee and the minimum salary of a driver Gr. II. The only question that has to be determined is what does the term 'minimum salary' employed in the above order comprise of.;
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