Supreme Court reinstates BMTC driver dismissed from service

Supreme Court reinstates BMTC driver dismissed from service

Supreme Court reinstates BMTC driver dismissed from service

The Supreme Court has come to the rescue of a Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation employee, by setting aside a Karnataka High Court order which had upheld his dismissal from the service for securing appointment by submitting a false certificate.

A bench of Justices V Gopala Gowda and R Banumathi restored the Labour Tribunal’s decision to reinstate K V S Ram to his post as driver since similarly placed candidates were awarded lesser punishment and there was inordinate delay as well in taking action against the employee.

“In exercise of its power of superintendence under Article 227 of the Constitution of India, the High Court can interfere with the order of the (Labour) Tribunal, only, when there has been a patent perversity in the orders of tribunal and courts subordinate to it or where there has been gross and manifest failure of justice or the basic principles of natural justice have been flouted,” the bench said.

Allowing an appeal filed by the workman, the court noted that there was no explanation as to why enquiry report was submitted against him after 12 years and he was allowed to work for 14 years. The court also took into consideration the fact the petitioner had attained the age of 45 years making him ineligible to seek alternative appointment.

“Considering the delay in completing the enquiry and the age of the appellant and the fact that similarly situated workmen were reinstated with lesser punishment, the labour court ordered reinstatement, in exercise of its discretion under Section 11A of the Industrial Disputes Act,” the bench said.

Ram approached the apex court challenging September 3, 2012 order of the High Court confirming his termination. He was appointed as driver with BMTC on September 3, 1985. He was dismissed from service on October 1, 2004.

Acting on his plea, the labour court rejected his termination since similarly placed workmen were reinstated with lesser punishment of stoppage of few increments.