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Rajasthan State Road Transport Corporation Vs. Bharat Singh Jhala (Dead) through Legal Heirs and Ors. - (Supreme Court) (30 Sep 2022)

Once the order of termination was approved by the Industrial Tribunal, the findings recorded by it are binding between parties

MANU/SC/1276/2022

Labour and Industrial

Present appeal is against the impugned judgment and order passed by the High Court of Judicature by which the Division Bench of the High Court has dismissed the said appeal challenging the order passed by the learned Single Judge dismissing the writ petition filed by the appellant confirming the order passed by the Labour Court setting aside the order of termination passed against the workman.

The workman was subjected to departmental enquiry and the charge against the deceased workman was not issuing the tickets to 10 passengers though he collected the fare. On conclusion of the departmental enquiry his services were terminated. The termination was the subject matter of the approval application before the Industrial Tribunal in an application under Section 33(2)(b) of the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947 (I.D. Act). In the said proceedings, the management was permitted to lead the evidence and prove the charge/misconduct before the Tribunal. In the said application, the parties led the evidence, both, oral as well as documentary. Thereafter, on appreciation of evidence on record, the Industrial Tribunal by order approved the order of termination.

Thereafter, the workman raised the Industrial Dispute challenging the order of termination which as such was proved by the Industrial Tribunal by order. Therefore, once the order of termination was approved by the Industrial Tribunal and the management was permitted to lead the evidence and prove the misconduct before the Court and thereafter on appreciation of evidence the order of termination was approved, thereafter the fresh reference under Section 10 of the I.D. Act challenging the order of termination was not permissible. The order passed by the Industrial Tribunal which as such is a higher forum than the Labour Court had attained the finality.

In the present case by specific order the Industrial Tribunal permitted the management to lead the evidence and prove the misconduct before the Court which as such was permissible. That thereafter the Industrial Tribunal approved the order of termination. Once the order of termination was approved by the Industrial Tribunal on appreciation of evidence led before it, thereafter the findings recorded by the Industrial Tribunal were binding between the parties. No contrary view could have been taken by the Labour Court contrary to the findings recorded by the Industrial Tribunal.

The judgment and award passed by the Labour Court confirmed by the High Court is unsustainable. The High Court has committed a very serious error in dismissing the writ petition/writ appeal confirming the judgment and award passed by the Labour Court setting aside the order of termination. The impugned judgment and order passed by the High Court confirming the judgment and award passed by the Labour Court setting aside the order of termination and the judgment and award passed by the Labour Court setting aside the order of termination are quashed and set aside. Appeal allowed.

Tags : AWARD   TERMINATION   MISCONDUCT  

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