STATE OF UTTARAKHAND & OTHERS Vs. SMT. V.P. SINGH AND ANOTHER
HIGH COURT OF UTTARAKHAND
State of Uttarakhand and others
Smt. V.P. Singh And Another
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Barin Ghosh, J. -
(1.) IN the hierarchy of the State, the post of Senior Assistant carried a different but lower pay scale than the post of Head Clerk. Husband of the private respondent was a Senior Assistant immediately before 23rd December, 1985. With effect from 23rd December 1985, his designation was altered from Senior Assistant to Head Clerk. With effect from 23rd December 1985, accordingly, his salary was fixed in the pay scale applicable to the posts of Head Clerks. On 30th May 2002, he retired, where after on 8th July 2002, he died. Subsequent thereto, at the time when his terminal dues were sought to be ascertained, it was held out that since there was a change in nomenclature of the post held by the husband of the private respondent, the husband of the private respondent was not entitled to the pay scale applicable to Head Clerks and, accordingly, there was a wrong pay fixation on 23rd December 1985, which wrong pay fixation continued until the time the husband of the private respondent retired. On that assumption, it was held that the husband of the private respondent received salaries in excess of what he was entitled to and, accordingly, the excess that he received is refundable by him. On that premise, attempts were made to deduct such excess from the terminal dues of the husband of the respondent. This action on the part of State was challenged successfully by the private respondent before the Tribunal. The Tribunal held that the husband of the private respondent did not get an opportunity to clarify his stand during his lifetime and, accordingly, it is not permissible to put the entire blame on the husband of the respondent and, on that account to deny dues, due and payable to the private respondent. Being aggrieved thereby, the present writ petition was filed, contending that in the matter of wrong fixation, the husband of the private respondent had a great role to play. It was contended that the husband of the private respondent was the Head Clerk of the Department at the relevant time and, it was he who was obliged to fix the pay scales of the persons entitled to receive the same in accordance with the grant made by the State. It was contended that only the nomenclature of the post was altered from Senior Assistant to Head Clerk and, accordingly, the husband of the private respondent was not entitled to the pay scale attached to Head Clerks. There is no assertion in any part of petition that, while the nomenclature was changed from Senior Assistant to Head Clerk, it was indicated that those Senior Assistants who would, by reason of change of nomenclature, become Head Clerks, would continued to receive salaries payable to Senior Assistants. In that background, it must be deemed that when the nomenclature Senior Assistant was changed to Head Clerk it was expressly held out that those Senior Assistants who, by reason of such change of nomenclature, would become Head Clerks, would be entitled to the salaries payable to the Head Clerks. It is not the contention in the writ petition that the salaries payable to the husband of the private respondent on the pay scale applicable to the Head Clerks had not been fixed on 23rd December 1985. In the circumstances, we find no merit in the writ petition and, accordingly, the same is dismissed. The interim order is vacated.;
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