All casual as well as daily wage labourers who had served in government establishments and local bodies for a continuous period of 10 years are entitled for regularisation in service irrespective of the year in which they had completed the stipulated service period, the Madras High Court Bench here has held.

Regularisation sought

Justice K. Ravichandra Baabu passed the ruling while allowing a batch of three writ petitions filed by drivers of Thanjavur Municipality. They had sought regularisation in service on the basis of a Government Order passed on February 28, 2006.

Government Order

The G.O. had ordered for service regularisation for all those who had completed 10 years as on January 1, 2006.

However, the Municipality and the Commissioner of Municipal Administration had rejected the petitioners’ request on the ground that they had not completed 10 year as on January 1, 2006. Challenging the reasoning given by the authorities, petitioners’ counsel C. Arul Vadivel Sekar contended that fixing a cut-off for regularisation would amount to discrimination among employees.

Accepting his contention, the judge said: “A perusal of the G.O. would show that it was not made as a one time measure granting regularisation to the employees who had put in 10 years of service as on January 1, 2006. The intention of the government is very clear. It only wanted regularisation of employees who had served for a continuous period of 10 years.

“Therefore, it fixed a cut off date as January 1, 2006 for counting 10 years of service.

That does not mean employees who had put in 10 years of service after the said date are not entitled for regularisation. If that is the interpretation to be given, it would certainly lead to discrimination among similarly situated persons thereby violating Article 14 (right to equality) of the Constitution.”

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