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Employees who have completed 10 years or above are entitled for regularization of their services: SC

RAJNISH KUMAR MISHRA & ORS v. STATE OF UTTAR PRADESH & ORS CIVIL APPEAL NOS.9413­ 9414 OF 2019 (Arising out of SLP(C) Nos. 23297­23298 of 2018) – December 13, 2019

The appellants were appointed on ad-hoc basis for the Ambedkar Nagar Judgeship. The initial appointment was extended from time to time. Later an advertisement was issued for the direct recruitment of Class III employees, which made the appellants file several writ petitions before the HC. A committee was formed by the order of District Judge comprising of 2 members of Judicial Officers, which reported some recommendations and the District Judge regularized the service of the appellants. However their successor declared the regularization orders were non-est. The District Judge also withdrew his earlier order and also directed recovery of emoluments. The appellants approached the Single Judge Bench of HC which dismissed the writ petition and imposed cost of Rs.50000/-on each appellant. An appeal to the Divisional Bench of HC also dismissed the appeal but set aside the cost imposed. Being aggrieved by these orders the appellants approached the Supreme Court.

Ms. Kamini Jaiswal, appearing on behalf of the appellants contended that the District Judge has rightly ordered regularization after considering the report. Here the successor has no occasion to cancel the order. The HC has failed to take the import of the UP Regularization of Persons Working on daily wages. In Sheo  Narain  Nagar  &  Ors. vs. State  of Uttar Pradesh & Ors  and  Secretary, State of Karnataka & Ors. vs. Umadevi  &  Ors. it was held that measure should be taken for regularization of services of the employees who was in service for 10yrs or more. The appeal deserves to be allowed and the impugned order deserves to be quashed and set aside.

Shri S.R. Singh appearing on behalf of respondent submitted that the appellants continued in service by virtue of interim order of HC and not on the basis of the judgment of Umadevi. The report of the committee set up by District Judge was conclusive and the successor is right in cancelling the order of regularization.  Also the appellants are not entitled to equitable relief. The circular issued by the Registrar General of the HC of Allahabad shows that all the ad-hoc daily wage employees must cease to work following any procedural law. The District Judge found that the regularization of appellants were not proper and annulled its earlier order and also ordered recovery of amount. The report of the committee was mainly based on the circular issued by the Registrar General of the HC. However the Judgment of Umadevi was already pronounced. A similar circumstance in the Allahabad HC also dismissed the writ petitions. This is the case of Sheo Narain Nagar. Also when the appellants’ case came to the consideration of the regularization committee, the appellants had already completed 12 yrs in service.

After hearing arguments of both the parties the Court observed the following. The court has to consider the case of Umadevi apart from the reports of the committee appointed. The order of the committee is right in passing the order of granting regularization. The successor of the District Judge could not have annulled the order of regularization. To follow the Principles of Natural Justice, an opportunity should be allowed to the appellants for being heard. The court observed that the three orders passed by the District Judge suffered violation of the Principle of Natural Justice. According to the exceptions provided in the case of Umadevi and the benefits granted under Sheo Narain Nagar, the appellants are entitled to regularization of services. The court thus made a decision allowing the appeals of the appellants. The judgment of the Single Judge Bench and the Divisional Bench of the HC  set aside and quashed. The consequential order of termination is also quashed and set aside. The earlier order of the District Judge regularizing the service of the appellants is upheld. Thus the termination of service id quashed and the appellants are directed to be reinstated to work. However the appellants are not entitled to back wages for the out of employment period.

– – PRIYADHARSHINI R

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