Friday, January 27, 2023

Supreme Court agrees with Madras High Court, allows advance increment appeal of ex-govt employee

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New Delhi (ILNS): The three judge bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan, R. Subhash Reddy and B.R. Gavai today dismissed a challenge of a Madras High Court order, upholding the demand of a senior government employee, Dr P Kirubarkan, for advance increment for his Ph D degree. The challenge was made by the State of Tamil Nadu.

Dr P Kirubarkan had been serving as the Deputy Director, Forensic Sciences Department at the time of his retirement in 2016. During his tenure of service, he pursued his Ph D degree after obtaining due permission from the department and completed it.

Dr P Kirubarkan then had requested for advance increment. This was not granted to him in terms of G.O.Ms.No.1159 P&AR (FR.II) Department dated 21.11.1984, by which, G.O.Ms No.843, Personnel and Administrative Reforms (F.R.I.) Department dated 05.09.1983 was revived.

When the case went to the High Court of Madras, the court had observed:

“A perusal of Clause No.4 of G.O.1159 unfolds the fact that the benefit of advance increment needs to be extended to all government servants, including teachers and a close reading of G.O.Ms.No.843 dated 05.09.1983 would go to show that it was issued for the purpose of grant of lump-sum amount as an incentive in order to enable Government Employees to pursue further education and acquire higher qualification. “Even though it was contended by the Respondents that G.O.Ms.No.843 dated 05.09.1983 is applicable to the staff members working in Home Department, especially to Police Constables, such segregation of category is not found in the contents of the said G.O., which merely stipulates that all the Government Servants, including teachers are entitled to advance, other the benefits of Clause No.4 of G.O.1159 would have become redundant.”

Allowing the appeal of the respondent (Dr P Kirubarkan) the high court bench had said: “The teachers have no role to play in the Personnel and Administrative Reforms Department and even assuming for the sake of argument that the word ‘teachers’ has been wrongly referred in G.O.1159, as they have got a separate Government Order for claiming advancement increment, the intention of the Government is very clear that all the Government Servants must be granted the benefit.

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“A harmonious reading has got to be given to both the Government Orders, namely, G.O.1159 and G.O.843 and if the intention of the Government was to give the benefit only to certain categories, then there is no need for inclusion of Clause No.4 in G.O.1159 and therefore, this Court is of the view that the benefit of advancement increment needs to be given to a person, who has completed Ph.D. in Forensic Sciences.”

Seeing no problem with the high court order, the Supreme Court dismissed the challenge.

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