By Akshay Sharma
Citation - 1 AIR 1975 SC 1737
The Appellants (Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd.) went to the Hon’ble Supreme Court by Special
Leave to Appeal against the award of Fifth Industrial Tribunal, West Bengal. The Tribunal has allowed the claim of Defendant (workmen) in some issues and rejected others. The Appellants has approached against the award partly allows the claim and challenging it to be set aside. Appellants challenged the competency of the State Government to refer the matter to Industrial Tribunal. The shares of the Appellant Company are entirely owned by the Central Government. The dispute is concerned with around 1,000 workers working at Barrackpore, West Bengal which is a repairing workshop Branch of the Company. The dispute is regarding these issues.
Issue 1: Whether the ‘education Allowance of employees’ children be given?
In issue No. 1 The Hon’ble Court without going into the merits of the issue held that the tribunal’ award of Rs. 12/- per month for each employee to meet the education expense of his children was beyond the scope of the matter referred for adjudication. Also the Hon’ble Court held that the Tribunal cannot alter the wages when such reference has not been asked or made for. The Court while dismissing the award of Tribunal on this issue also said that such a dispute could be raised before the tribunal afresh.
Issue 2: Whether there can be reconsideration of the Lunch allowance given to employees?
The Hon’ble court decided this issue in the favor of the Appellant company because every
employee including the supervisory and non-supervisory staff was getting lunch allowance at Rs. 1.50/- per employee. The Court held that the award of the tribunal, therefore, was unnecessary and superfluous in that regard.
Issue 3: Whether certain more canteen workers should be made permanent employees?
The Hon’ble Court decided this issue in favor of the Appellant Company and held that the
Tribunal did not go into details like whether more number of permanent employees were
required in the canteen. They can be employed permanently only after vacancy of the permanent employees. Thus, the award of the tribunal was not unreasonable. The Appellant Company agreed to employ them permanently whenever any vacancy arises.
In the present case Hon’ble Court allowed the appeal and Most of the part of the award of the tribunal was set aside. Some other changes were made to the award of the Tribunal that was clarified by the Court. This case became a landmark case for deciding whether the State
Government can refer the matter to Industrial Disputes Tribunal or not.