Pay salary arrears says human rights group

Ravindranath Shanbhag, president of Human Rights Foundation, said on Monday that the State government, which had dragged its feet over implementing the Supreme Court’s order on the payment of salaries to two persons - Akku and Leela from Udupi - for the past four years, was now struggling to escape punishment for contempt of court.

Dr. Shanbhag said Ms. Akku and Ms. Leela had put in about four decades of service as temporary cleaners at Government Women Teachers’ Training Institute in Udupi on a monthly salary of Rs. 15 before retiring in 2011. Their numerous requests for making their jobs permanent and seeking full salary went in vain. Despite the clear orders from the government to make all the temporary employees who served for more than a period of 10 years before to 1984, regular, their pleas were disregarded.

Terminated from service

In 1998, when Ms. Akku and Ms. Leela complained to the Karnataka Administrative Tribunal, under the guidance of the foundation, the Department of Education terminated them from service.

But they continued to serve without any salary. The tribunal’s verdict in 2003 went in favour of Ms. Akku and Ms. Leela, which ordered their jobs be made permanent and they be paid full salaries due from 1971.

The State government questioned these orders and moved the High Court, which gave orders in 2004, upholding the verdict of the Administrative Tribunal. The State government took the matter to Supreme Court and met the same fate.

‘Failure to implement order’

In January 2010, the Supreme Court ordered that the posts of Ms. Akku and Ms. Leela be made permanent and their salaries be paid from 1971.

But the officials of the State government had failed in implementing these orders of the Supreme Court even after four years, Dr. Shanbagh said. The officials had made no attempt to either regularise Ms. Akku and Ms. Leela or to pay back the arrears of the last 42 years. “We will bring this matter to the notice of the Supreme Court soon,” he said.

  • The two cleaners haven’t been paid arrears since 1971

  • Their jobs weren’t made permanent even after 10 years