MOTOR AND MACHINERY MANUFACTURERS LTD Vs. STATE OF WEST BENGAL
LAWS(CAL)-1963-8-5
HIGH COURT OF CALCUTTA
Decided on August 14,1963

MOTOR AND MACHINERY MANUFACTURERS LTD. Appellant
VERSUS
STATE OF WEST BENGAL Respondents


Referred Judgements :-

HEYDON'S CASE [REFERRED TO]
SEAFORD COURT ESTATES LTD. V. ASHER [REFERRED TO]
SUPERINTENDENT AND REMEMBRANCER OF LEGAL AFFAIRS VS. JJANDREWS [REFERRED TO]


JUDGEMENT

H.K.Bose, C.J. - (1.)This is an appeal from an order of Banerjee, J., dated the 16th February, 1962, discharging a Rule issued under Article 226 of the Constitution.
(2.)The appellant is a public limited company having its registered head office at 37, Chitta Ran-jan Avenue, Calcutta and is engaged in the manufacturing of electric motors etc., and employs about 600 workmen at its factory at 10, Jawpur Road, Dum Dum, Calcutta. The factory run by the appellant company is a factory within the meaning of the Factories Act, 1948, and is governed by the provisions of the said Act. The workmen of the factory save and except a few monthly paid staff get their wages calculated on hourly basis foi all working days excepting those days that are covered by sickness, annual leave and festival holidays under different provisions of the Factories Act. The workmen at the factory enjoy 12 paid festival holidays in a calendar year and also get the usual weekly holiday on Sunday which is a holiday without pay (sic). In the year 1959, 22nd of March was a Sunday and 24th and 25th March were declared holidays on account of Doljatra festival. In that year 10th April and 15th April were also declared holidays on account of Id-ul-fitr and 1st Baisakh respectively. Being under the impression that it would be convenient both to the workmen and the company if the intervening day, namely, 23rd March, 1959 which was a working day could be declared a holiday, the appellant company declared 23rd March, 1959, as a holiday and further declared with a view to compensate the loss of wages for 23rd March, 1959, that Sunday the 29th March 1959 would be working day. Notice as required by the Act declaring that the factory would remain closed on 23rd March, 1959, was given on 9th March, 1959; but as the appellant company was informed by the Factory Inspector upon whom this notice was served that the notice was not strictly in conformity with the provisions of law, the appellant company by a notice dated 20th March, 1959, cancelled the previous notice dated 9th March, 1959, and declared that the fac-tory would remain closed as already declared on 23rd March 1959, but would remain open in lieu thereof on 12th April, 1959, which was a Sunday. On 6th April, 1959, the workmen of the factory and/or their Union wrote a letter to the appellant company contending inter alia that no reasons had been ascribed for declaring 23rd March, 1959, a full working day, as a holiday and so the workmen were entitled to a compensation holiday under Section 53 of the Factories Act, 1948. This contention was disputed by the appellant company with the result that the State Government by an order dated 16th August 1960, referred the dispute between the appellant company and its workmen represented by Motor and Machinery Workers' Union to the 5th Industrial Tribunal, West Bengal for adjudication. The specific issue that was referred was as follows:- "Whether the workmen are entitled to wages for 23-3-59 which was declared as a holiday by the company." Before the Tribunal the appellant company inter alia raised a preliminary objection to the effect that the dispute was not an industrial dispute and therefore the Tribunal had no jurisdiction to adjudicate upon the issue. The Tribunal however overruled the preliminary objection and decided the issue on merits. The Tribunal held that the workmen working on daily wages basis on the plea "no work no pay" would be entitled to get one day's wages by way of compensation for the 23rd March, 1959. The Award of the Tribunal is dated 20th January 1961. On 23rd of March, 1961, the appellant company moved this Court under Article 226 of the Constitution challenging the award and the finding therein and a Rule Nisi was issued on that date by Sinha, J. This Rule finally came up for hearing before Bancrjee, J., who by his judgment delivered on the 16th February, 1962, discharged the Rule with costs.
(3.)The learned trial Judge has held upon a construction of Section 52 of the Factories Act, 1948 which has a material bearing on the question at issue that the appellant company had not followed the provisions of Section 52 of the Act and their action in declaring 23rd March, 1959, as a substituted holiday for making the Sunday the 12th April a working day was not warranted by the provisions of Section 52 of the Act and as such the Tribunal had come to the correct conclusion with regard to the issue referred to it for adjudication.


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