Decided on March 11,1997

Himachal Pradesh Nagar Vikas Appellant


M.SRINIVASAN, J. - (1.)THE petitioner is aggrieved by the order of the Regional Provident Fund Commissioner, Sub Regional Office, Stokes Place, Shimla, dated September 25, 1996 passed under Section 7 A of the Employees' Provident Funds and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1952 (hereinafter referred to as the Act). By the said order, the first respondent has rejected the contentions of the petitioner that the provisions of the Act are not applicable to the petitioner and held that the petitioner is liable to comply with the provisions of the Act in respect of its employees engaged directly or through the contractor engaged for its activities for the period under enquiry and also for further period.
(2.)BEFORE the petitioner came into existence, the concerned body was known as Shimla Development Authority under the provisions or H.P. Town and Country Planning Act, 1977. The petitioner was constituted by the Government in exercise of its powers under Section 40 of the said Act, by a Notification dated November 14, 1994. Section 41 of the Town and Country Planning Act provides that every Town and Country Development Authority shall be a body corporate by the name specified in the notification under Section 40, and shall have perpetual succession and a common seal with power to acquire and hold property both movable and immovable, and subject to the provisions of the Act or rules made there under to transfer any property held by it, to contract and to do all other things necessary for the purposes of the Act and may sue and be sued in its corporate name. Under Section 42, every such Authority shall consist of Chairman and other members not exceeding six appointed by the State Government. Section 42 A deals with Constitution of Town and Country Development Authority for the capital town of Himachal Pradesh.
A notification dated November 14, 1994 is produced by the petitioner as Annexure P 1. It is seen therefrom that the Governor has exercised powers under Section 40 to establish the petitioner with immediate effect for the planning areas/special areas as specified in the schedule annexed to the notification and that all the assets and liabilities of the Shimla Development Authority, Special Area Development Authority for Kulu Valley Special Area, the Town and Country Development Authority for planning area, namely, Hamirpur, Dharamshala, Mandi, Parwanoo and Barotiwala. By the said notification, the said Authorities were dissolved and the assets and liabilities stood transferred to the petitioner with immediate effect therefrom.

(3.)THE normal activities of the petitioner under the provisions of the Town and Country Planning Act are to acquire land and develop the same for sale or to construct houses/flats for sale to public. The activities were to be carried out through employees taken on deputation from other Government departments and also by engaging their own employees on daily wages. While the employees, who were taken on deputation, were covered by the provisions of Provident Fund Scheme relating to such departments, the persons who were employed on daily wage basis were not covered by any such scheme. The dispute before us relates only to such daily wage employees, who are not covered by any scheme relating to Provident Fund.

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