If any more staff petitions come up before it for alternative job

The Madras High Court has cautioned the Metropolitan Transport Corporation (MTC) that it will be forced to initiate suo motu contempt proceedings against it if any more petitions come up before it from employees seeking a direction for provision of alternative job due to disability in the course of employment.

The court observed that on finding several such requests before it, it had already directed the corporation to constitute a special cell consisting of its own officers and not to drive any person to the court claiming relief under the provisions of the Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act.

To be viewed strictly

The court had also held that any deviation from the direction would be viewed strictly.

“It is rather unfortunate that notwithstanding the said direction, the petitioner has been forced to come to this court even to consider his representation. If any further complaint comes on this ground, this court will be forced to initiate suo motu contempt for the disobedience of the earlier order passed by this court,” said Justice K. Chandru.

The Judge was disposing of a writ petition by K. Anbazhagan who sought a direction to the Managing Director of MTC to consider his representations made last year and provide him with an alternative employment in the light of Section 47 of the Act.

The petitioner’s counsel R.Y. George Williams submitted that in his representation dated February 10, Mr. Anbazhagan had stated that he was working as a conductor attached to the Vadapalani depot here.

As his spinal cord got damaged, he underwent surgery and his health deteriorated. Also, on the eve of Diwali in 2011 due to a fire accident his right hand and leg were completely damaged and he underwent plastic surgery. The doctor advised him to do light work. Following this, he requested the management to provide him alternative employment in terms of the law. As there was no reply, he sent reminders and finally filed the writ petition.

The transport corporation submitted that it was willing to pass orders on the representation provided a reasonable time was granted.

Disposing of the petition, Mr. Justice Chandru directed the MTC to consider the petitioner’s representation in accordance with law and to take a final decision on the request within three months.

If it was necessary, the petitioner may be asked to appear before the medical board for getting a competent certificate.