National Con. of Officers Asson. of C.P. Sector Undertakings & Ors Vs. U.O.I. &
Ors  Insc 725 (30 November 2004)
Ashok Bhan & Dr. AR. Lakshmanan Dr. AR. Lakshmanan, J.
The present writ petition under Article 32 of the Constitution of India is
concerning release of revised IDA pay scale in respect of the British India
Corporation ( a Government Undertaking) and its two units situated at Cawnpore
Woollen Mills, Kanpur and New Egerton Woollen Mills, Dhariwal (Punjab). The
employees of the Cawnpore Woollen Mills, Kanpur and New Egerton Woollen Mills,
Dhariwal have authorised the National Confederation of Officers' Association of
the Central Public Sector Undertaking to submit this petition on their behalf
in this Court and, therefore, the petitioners are jointly submitting this
The brief controversy involved in this matter is that by order dated
19.7.1995, the Central Government has denied the benefit of revised IDA pay
scale to those sick public sector undertakings which are registered with the
BIFR. This Court on dated 7.5.1999 in S.L.P.(C) No. 16732/1997 ordered that the
National Textile Corporation and its subsidiaries be given benefits under O.M.
dated 19.7.1995, at least from 1.1.1999. The said order reads thus:
"S.L.P.(C)No.16732 of 1997 & I.As. No.1-9 in S.L.P.(C) No.16732 of
1997 We heard learned counsel for the parties. In our view till these matters
are finally decided, interest of justice requires that the officers/employees
of the N.T.C.
and its subsidiaries whose cases have been cleared by the Board for
Industrial and Financial Reconstruction by order dated 21/28th April, 1998 and
which would cover 518 employees of the I.D.A. Pattern working in N.T.C.
and its subsidiaries should be given without prejudice to the rights and
contentions of all the contesting parties in these proceedings, and purely on
ad hoc basis benefits under O.M. dated 19th July, 1995 at least from Ist
All arrears on the basis of that O.M. will be worked out and paid over to
the aforesaid employees only w.e.f.
Ist January, 1999 and in future during the pendency of these proceedings the
monthly payments will also be continued to be made on the enhanced rate till
the final disposal of these proceedings.
The aforesaid arrears shall be computed and paid w.e.f. Ist January, 1999
within eight weeks from today.
It is made clear that the aforesaid order is passed subject to the ultimate
decision in these proceedings and subject to the adjustment, if any, as
directed by this Court ultimately and all such employees shall have no
objection to such adjustment to be made from their future salaries or other
retrial benefits, if any.
For compliance of the aforesaid order, the Central Government will make
available necessary funds to the N.T.C., if required.
The S.L.P. along with the other matters will stand over to 17th August, 1999. In the meantime, counter affidavit and the rejoinder affidavit, if any,
are to be filed by the concerned parties are permitted to be filed." The
above order was passed in the petition filed by the N.T.C.
(IDA) Employees Association.
According to the petitioners, the British India Corporation and its two
units referred to above are also sick undertakings and they are also entitled
to the release of revised IDA pay pattern in compliance of the order dated
19.7.1995 and the benefits given by this Court in order dated 7.5.1999 in
S.L.P.(C) 16732/1997 should also be given to the petitioners and the employees
of Cawnpore Woollen Mills and New Egerton Woollen Mills, Dhariwal and the employees
of the British India Corporation. Thus petitioner Nos. 1 & 2 have submitted
this writ petition in representative capacity for looking after the employees
of the said units.
Mr. Sanjiv Sen, learned counsel appearing for the petitioners, submitted
that the revision of pay scales of IDA pattern to the petitioners is a clear
violation of Art. 14 of the Constitution of India as the employees of other
public sector undertakings including employees of British India Corporation
should have been given the benefit of revised pay scales on IDA pattern, but
the petitioners were denied. After the order dated 7.5.1999 passed by this
Court in S.L.P.(C) No. 16732 of 1997, the petitioners submitted a
representation through their President on 31.5.1999 which is marked as Annexure
P-4 in this writ petition on which the Chairman of British India Corporation
Ltd. (respondent No.3) Suggested by letter dated 2.6.1999 marked as Annexure
P-5 in this writ petition, to the Central government for granting the benefit
of IDA pay pattern to the employees of British India Corporation Ltd.
(respondent No.3) also but the Central Government has not accepted the
representation of the petitioners and neither any reply has been given nor
granted any relief to the petitioners. It is important to note that the Company
was nationalised for securing proper management and for development of
production, modernization of plant and machinery and to protect thousands of
employees for their employment. The company is at present under the control of the
Ministry of Textiles and is an undertaking of the Central Government and that
the Company is a Government Company under the Companies Act. Since in an
identical matter, this Court by order dated 7.5.1999 , passed in S.L.P.(C)
No.16732 of 1997 (NTC (IDA) Employees Association vs.
Union of India), granted the benefit of revised pay scale to the N.T.C.
and its subsidiaries, the petitioners are also claiming the same relief for
the employees of the British India Corporation and for its employees working in
the Cawnpore Woollen Mills and New Egerton Woollen Mills, Dhariwal.
It is pertinent to notice that in an identical matter when the employees of
NTC (IDA pattern) Employees' Association, submitted a writ petition before the
High Court of Bombay, registered as W.P.No.
43 of 1997, the High Court dismissed the petition observing that if the
directions issued by this Court have not been complied with, remedy does not
lie before the High Court. Aggrieved by that order, the said Association filed
S.L.P.(C) No. 16732 of 1997 before this Court.
This Court by order dated 27.9.2002 passed the following order:
"Petition for Special Leave to appeal (Civil) No. 16732/1997 (From the
judgment & order dated 24/06/1997 in WP 43/97 of the High Court of Bombay)
N.T.C. (IDA) Emp. Association ..Petitioner U.O.I. & Ors.
With T.P.(C) No. 409/1997, T.P.(C) No.490/1997 Date : 27/09/2002 These
petitions were called on for hearing today CORAM :
Hon'ble Mr. Justice U.C. Banerjee Hon'ble Mr. Justice B.N. Agrawal UPON
hearing counsel the Court made the following O R D E R Intervention application
We have been informed that BIFR has already formulated eight schemes which
stand approved by all concerned and agencies. Let the scheme as sanctioned by
BIFR be implemented. The special leave petition and the transfer petitions
stand disposed of accordingly." The respective respondents filed their
According to them, the Department of Public Enterprises has, vide its order
No. 2(50)/86-DPE(WC) dated 19.7.1995 denied the benefit of revised IDA pay
scales to those Public Sector Undertakings, which are referred to BIFR. It was
submitted that the British India Corporation Limited and its two units is a
sick public sector undertaking and had been referred to BIFR and BIFR had
issued winding-up of these units vide its order dated 31.10.1994. The appeal
preferred by the Company in AAIFR was also dismissed and the AAIFR confirmed
the order of winding-up of these units. It was, therefore, submitted that as
per the Department of Public Enterprises order dated 19.7.1995, the petitioners
are not entitled to the benefit of revised pay scales w.e.f. 1.1.1992.
It was further argued that an interim order dated 7.5.1999 in S.L.P.(C) No.
16732 of 1997 was passed directing that the eight sick subsidiary Corporation
of National Textile Corporation Ltd. be given the benefits under revised pay
scales w.e.f. 1.1.1999, purely on ad hoc basis, subject to ultimate decision
and adjustment, if any, as directed by the Court ultimately and all such
employees shall have no objection to such adjustment to be made from their
future salaries or other retrial benefits and this decision of the Court was
applicable to only these eight subsidiary Corporations of NTC and not to
British India Corporation, especially because British India Corporation was
ordered to be wound up and its case was pending before the High Court of
Allahabad for liquidation. At present, the case of British India Corporation
has been remanded to BIFR for consideration of revival package, which also does
not include any revision of pay scales.
Hence, no revision of IDA pay scales is possible or admissible.
We heard Mr. Sanjiv Sen, learned counsel appearing for the petitioners and
Mr. N.N. Goswami, learned senior counsel appearing for the respondents. At the
time of hearing, our attention was drawn to the order passed by the BIFR in
Reconstruction Case No. 518/92 Re : British India Corporation Ltd. dated
18.6.2002. It is seen from the said order that the British India Corporation
filed application with BIFR on January 24,2001 along with revival proposal and
Techno- Economic viability Plan of 1998. BIFR at its hearing held on 13.6.2001
appointed IDBI as the operating agency under Section 17(3) of the Act and
directed the Company to submit a revival proposal within one month. The revival
proposal was submitted by the BICL in July, 2001. The proposal envisaging
onetime settlement of dues of institutions and SBI was discussed at a joint
meeting of involved agencies on January 4, 2002. On 15.2.2002, IDBI (OA)
submitted its final report along with rehabilitation scheme conveying consensus
of all present in the joint meeting. On the basis of the aforesaid report
received from the operating agency, a Draft Revival Scheme of the Company was
circulated to all concerned for getting consent as required under Section 19(2)
read with Section 19(1) of the Sick Industrial
Companies (Special Provisions) Act, 1985. The matter was adjourned for
hearing objections/suggestions at the subsequent hearing.
It is seen from the above proceedings that the Government of India had given
approval for the revival proposal. After considering the representation of all
concerned and the suggestions made in the Draft Revised Proposal, the BIFR
approved the Scheme to be circulated as sanctioned Scheme under Section 18 of
the Act. Now that the revival proposal has been approved by the BIFR, the
petitioners in the present writ petition, in our opinion, would also be
entitled for the same benefits as given to the N.T.C. (IDA) employees
Association in S.L.P.(C) No.16732 of 1997 dated 27.9.2002.
We, therefore, dispose of the writ petition by directing the implementation
of the Scheme as sanctioned Scheme by the BIFR in so far as the petitioners are
concerned. We place on record the statement made by the respondents in their
counter affidavits and the submission made by Mr. N.N. Goswami, learned senior
counsel appearing for the respondents, that the scheme sanctioned by BIFR would
be completed by March, 2005 and further talks regarding fixation of pay would
be held thereafter. There shall be no order as to costs.