Boutique Litigation Law Firm - Retain Lawyers - Research based Law Firm - Complete legal services

Supreme Court: Not in the overall interest of the Govt. servants in forming multiple service associations based on job description

The SC on August 10, 2020 {GOVERNMENT OF INDIA & ORS. v. ISRO DRIVERS ASSOCIATION} held that any association formed on the basis of job description or trade will not qualify to accord recognition, and later communication dated 22nd April, 1994 is supplementing the scheme of Rules 1993 for its proper implementation in fulfilment of the object with which the scheme has been framed and there appears no apparent error in the decision of the authority rejecting the claim seeking recognition in forming the association representing interest of the drivers based on job description not being covered under the scheme of Rules 1993.

It was held by the SC Bench, comprising of Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul, Justice Ajay Rastogi  & Justice Aniruddha Bose, that the scheme of Rules 1993 clearly manifests that the primary object of the scheme is to promote the common service interest of its members and service association which intends to accord recognition must represent minimum 35% of the total category of employees with a rider that where there is only one association which commands more than 35% membership and another association with second highest membership must be recognized if it commands at least 15% membership.

The instant appeal before the SC was directed against the order and judgment dated 22nd September, 2008 passed by the Division Bench of the High Court of Andhra Pradesh at Hyderabad holding the association formed by the drivers based on job description as a ‘distinct category’ laid down under Rule 5 (c) of Central Civil Services (Recognition of Service Association) Rules, 1993 (herein being referred to as “Rules 1993”) overruling the view expressed by the Single Bench of the High Court dated 9th October, 2001.

The SC held that the intention appears to be to avoid plurality of associations which indeed may not be in the overall interest of the Government servants in forming service association on their job description. It was held that in this context, the expression ‘distinct category of government servants’ referred under Rule 5 (c) with its due emphasis in furtherance of the clarification which has been made by the rule making authority is, in fact, supplementing the scheme of rules for its effective and proper implementation which is permissible under the law unless held to the contrary and that was never the case of the respondent at any stage in grouping the classification of posts in group ‘A’, ‘B’, ‘C’ and ‘D’ as a ‘distinct category’, is in contravention to Rule 5 (c ) of Rules 1993 and any further sub­ classification of posts based on job description is not permissible under the recruitment and conduct rules if permitted under the guise of expression ‘distinct category’ to form service association, it would defeat the purpose and object with which the scheme of Rules 1993 have been framed according recognition to service association which has been primarily formed with an object of promoting the common service interests of its members at large and the literal interpretation in isolation of the term ‘distinct category’ made by the Division Bench of the High Court in the impugned judgment granting permission to each group of employees based on job description/trade to claim recognition and form their service association would not only defeat the primary object of the scheme of Rules 1993 but the purpose as well with which the Joint Consultative Machinery has been formed to watch albeit the common service interest of its members/Government servants.

The SC held that on the overall analysis, the appeal deserves to succeed. The impugned judgment passed by the Division Bench of the High Court dated 22nd September, 2008 was held to be unsustainable and was accordingly set aside by the SC. The appeal stood allowed.



Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published