Employment of temporary for years would be unfair labour practice: J&K HC
J&K High Court has declared the practice of keeping workmen on temporary or contractual for years together in spite of having vacant posts as unfair practice and ordered the regularisation of such workmen.
Workmen were engaged by the J&K Bank as Armed Guards-cum-Night Watchmen on temporary basis on consolidated charges of Rs.2,000/- per month by order dated 04.04.2000 in almost all cases initially for a period of two months, somewhere in the year 2000. On completion of initial period of two months, their engagement appears to have been extended from time to time. However, in the year 2001, the engagement of the respondents-workmen which was initially made on temporary basis was converted into contractual subject to new terms and conditions. This contractual appointment made in the year 2001 was for a period of two years and later on extended from time to time for over a decade or more.
The court held that we are of the opinion that wherever it is found that similarly situated workmen are regularized by the employer itself under some scheme or otherwise and the workmen in question who have approached Industrial/Labour Court are at par with them, direction of regularization in such cases may be legally justified, otherwise, non-regularization of the left over workers itself would amount to invidious discrimination qua them in such cases and would be violative of Art.14 of the Constitution. Thus, the Industrial adjudicator would be achieving the equality by upholding Art. 14, rather than violating this constitutional provision.