MD. SIRAJUL ISLAM CHOUDHURY Vs. STATE OF TRIPURA
HIGH COURT TRIPURA
Md. Sirajul Islam Choudhury
STATE OF TRIPURA
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(1.)By means of this writ petition, the petitioner who was initially appointed as Under Graduate Classical Teacher (Arabic) on 24/3/1976 has challenged the action of the respondents denying him the 3rd ACP [Assured Career Progression] by the memorandum No.Pen-1/PR No.28/2017-18/SKC/0212/623-24 dtd. 3/8/2017 issued by the respondent No.3, the Secretary to the Government of Tripura, Secondary Education Department [Annexure-2 to the writ petition]. The petitioner has also challenged the memorandum No.F.6(1)-FIN(PC)/98 dtd. 17/2/2005 issued by the Under Secretary to the Government of Tripura, Finance Department [Annexure-4 to the writ petition] on the ground of unreasonableness and absence of intelligible differentia. Further, the petitioner has urged this court for directing the respondents to grant him the ACP with effect from 31/12/2015 and to fix his pay in the upgraded scale. It has been further urged that the respondents shall be prohibited from recovering any money from the petitioner on account of excess payment.
(2.)The facts are mostly admitted. On 24/3/1976, the petitioner was appointed as Under Graduate Classical Teacher (Arabic). Subsequently by his own effort the petitioner acquired the graduation (BA in Arabic) on 18/8/1982 and the post graduate degree (MA in Arabic) from Gauhati University. The petitioner has asserted that by the memorandum No.F.4(62)FIN(PC)/92 dtd. 7/12/1992 the state retrospectively operated a scheme to grant benefit of higher pay scale corresponding to the appropriate grade for acquiring higher qualification in the respective trade/subject to the Assistant Teacher and some other categories of teachers under Education Department. Since the petitioner acquired the higher education he was entitled to get the benefits in terms of the following passage of the memorandum dtd. 7/12/1992:
"F. FOR THE SCHOOL TEACHERS AND SIMILAR OTHER EMPLOYEE (SUCH AS PHYSICAL INSTRUCTOR, LIBRARIAN, COACH, CLASSICAL TEACHER, HINDI TEACHER, VERNICULAR TEACHER, CRAFT INSTRUCTOR/TEACHER ETC WHO ACQUIRED HIGHER ACADEMIC AUALIFICATION IN THEIR RESPECTIVE TRADE SUBJECT TO WHICH THEY ARE/ATTACHED ON OR AFTER 24/4/1982
i) They shall be granted higher pay scales according to their qualification w.e.f 1/1/1988 or the date of publication of result whichever is later.
ii) The benefit shall be admissible only for those incumbents who acquired higher qualification upto the period of 31/12/1991 (date of publication of result),
iii) Pay shall be notionally fixed under the provision of F.R 22(a) (i) upto 31/12/1991 with actual financial benefit from 1/1/1992. However, after fixation of pay under F.R22(a) (i), date of next increment of the concerned employees shall fall due on the date of their earning of periodical increment as usual;
iv) Such benefit admissible on the event of acquiring higher qualification shall be restricted only for the Graduation/Graduation with Honours/Post Graduation Degree (Not Diploma/Certificate in the particular trade/Subject to which the Particular incumbent belongs to.
v) Pay scale for the posts of Librarian and Physical Instructor on acquiring higher qualification, shall be determined in accordance to SL Nos 1 and 2 as shown under (D) above. Pay Scales for the posts of Coach and Senior Coach on acquiring higher qualification, shall be determined in accordance to SL Nos 3 and 4 shown under (D) above.
vi) Benefit of movement from Lower grade to higher highest grade under part-B or part-C or Notes as P/59 (for School Teacher) under Schedule- III of the R.O.P Rules, 1988 shall be allowed after calculating the period of service from the date of enjoying such higher pay scales, pay scales in such cases shall be determined in the light of scales mentioned at (B) and (D).
vii) The aforesaid benefits shall be admissible in respect of such categories of employees who acquired higher qualification in the respective trade/subject prior to 24/4/1982, but were not granted the appropriate scale according to their qualification."
(3.)There cannot be any confusion that the passage (vii) provides financial benefit would be available to those who did not get such benefits under the previous scheme. It is exclusionary in any manner. The said scheme had been truncated with effect from 1/1/1992 by providing grant of one additional increment from the date of acquisition of degree in the same trade. But that benefit was withdrawn with effect from 1/6/1996 by operation of Tripura State Civil Services (Revised Pay) Rules, 1999. Accordingly, the petitioner got the scale up-gradation first to the scale for Graduate Teacher with effect from 1/1/1988 and then upgraded to the scale of Post Graduate Teacher with effect from 31/12/1990. In terms of the scheme, he was continued in the under graduate establishment. After introduction of the Career Advancement Scheme (CAS) by the ROP Rules 1999 and Assured Career Progression (ACP) by the ROP Rules 1999, the petitioner was entitled under Rule 10 of those rules to get scale up-gradation as stagnant relief.
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