Decided on August 24,1988

R V Krishnarao Respondents


S.B.MAJMUDAR - (1.)Bharat Heavy Electrical Limited has filed this petition under Art. 226 of the Constitution which in substance is one under Art. 227 thereof seeking to challenge the award passed by the Presiding Officer of the Labour Court at Surat in Reference (LCS) 326 of 1981. By the said Awards the industrial dispute raised by the respondent-workman against the petitioner-concern has been adjudicated upon and the reference is partly allowed. The Labour Court has directed the petitioner-concern to reinstate the respondent-workman in service with continuity in service but directed the petitioner to pay 25 of back wages with effect from 5-10-1985. It is further clarified that the petitioner will be entitled to transfer the respondent-workman or to send him on deputation according to its needs. The said right of the petitioner-management has been upheld.
(2.)In order to appreciate the grievance of the petitioner; a few introductory facts are required to be noted at the outset. Respondent workman was appointed as welder-Grade I in the pay scale of Rs. 470 644 by the order of appointment dated 24-6-1975 by the petitioner concern. During March 1980 the respondent was working at Ukai Thermal Power Station in Surat district. On 5-3-1980 the petitioner decided to send on deputation the respondent alongwith others to Bhopal for a period of three months It is the case of the petitioner that the respondent did not like to go to Bhopal and therefore be unauthorisedly remained on leave. That earlier on 12-3-1980 the respondent applied for leave for visiting Baroda which was granted. According to the petitioner thereafter the respondent remained absent without leave of his superior. Ultimately the petitioner informed the respondent vide letter dated 14-6-1980 that the respondents name was struck off from the muster-roll from 10-5-1980. The respondent raised an industrial dispute for reinstatement in service with back wages. It is that dispute which was entertained and adjudicated upon by the Labour Court Surat as mentioned earlier.
(3.)After recording evidence offered by the parties the decision as noted earlier was arrived at by the Labour Court. The Labour Court took the view that striking off the name of the respondent-workman from the register of workmen amounted to retrenchment within the meaning of term retrenchment as defined in the Industrial Disputes Act 1947 vide Sec. 2(oo) (a) and (b) (c) as they stood at the relevant time and as no retrenchment compensation was offered to the respondent by the petitioner while striking off the name of the respondent from the register of workmen the said action of the petitioner was declared to null and void and consequently the order of reinstatement was passed. However as the respondent had filed his statement of claim before the Labour Court only on 4-10-1985 and was not found to be active in prosecuting the dispute before the Labour Court the Labour Court directed payment of back wages only at the rate of 25% from 4 till actual reinstatement pursuant to the Labour Courts order.

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