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Industrial Disputes Act, 1947 : Sections 2(oo) and 25-F.

K.S.Srinivas ,
  15 October 2011       Share Bookmark

Court :
Supreme Court of India
Brief :
Retrenchment-Sugar Factory-Workmen-Working during crushing season only-Cessation of work consequent to closure of season-Held such a cessation is not retrenchment.
Citation :
Hon’ble Supreme Court in Morinda Co-op. SM Ltd Vs R.K.& others 1995 (5) SCC 653

PETITIONER:

MORINDA CO-OP. SUGAR MILLS LTD.

 

            Vs.

 

RESPONDENT:

RAM KISHAN AND OTHERS ETC.

 

DATE OF JUDGMENT25/08/1995

 

BENCH:

RAMASWAMY, K.

BENCH:

RAMASWAMY, K.

HANSARIA B.L. (J)

 

CITATION:

 1996 AIR  332                          1995 SCC  (5) 653

 JT 1995 (6)   547          1995 SCALE  (5)198

 

ACT:

 

HEADNOTE:

 

 

JUDGMENT:

                                     O R D E R

Leave granted.

     We have  heard the  counsel on  both sides.  The Labour Court and the High Court in the impugned judgment dated July 29,1994 made  in CWP  Nos.10033-35 of  1994  concluded that since the respondents had worked for more than 240 days in a year, they  were retrenched  workmen within  the meaning  of Section 2  (oo) of Industrial Disputes Act, 1947 [for short, `the Act].  Consequently, requirements of Section 25F of the Act need  to be satisfied but it was not done. So, held that the retrenchment  is void  and consequently reinstatement of the respondents  was directed. Thus, this appeal by special leave.

    

When we directed the appellants to furnish the crushing seasons in  which the  factory worked, they filed additional affidavit and  for the      years 1987-88  to 1993-94,  curshing seasons were given as follows :

 

Crushing Year  Commenced on  Closed on

-------------     ------------  ---------

1987-88                       7.11.1987     18.4.1988

1988-89                  28.11.1988     17.4.1989

1989-90                  19.11.1989     30.4.1990

1990-91                  25.10.1990      7.3.1991

1991-92                  30.10.1991     17.4.1992

1992-93                  28.10.1992     16.4.1993

1993-94                       2.11.1993     10.3.1994

 

   It would  thus be clear that  the respondents were not working throughout  the season.            They worked during crushing seasons only.  The respondents were taken into work for the season and  consequent to closure of the season, they ceased to work.

    

The question  is whether  such a cessation would amount to retrenchment.  Since it  is only  a seasonal  work,  the respondents cannot  be said  to have been retrenched in view of what  is stated  in clause (bb) of Section 2 (oo) of the Act.        Under  these circumstance,       we are of the opinion that the view  taken by  the labour Court and  the High Court is illegal. However,  the appellant  is directed  to maintain a register  for all  workmen   engaged during the  seasons enumerated hereinbefore  and when  the new season starts the appellant should  make a  publication in neighbouring places in which  the respondents  normally live  and if  they would report for  duty,  the  appellant  would  engage  them  in accordance with seniority and exigency of work.

   

The  appeals   are accordingly  allowed  but,  in the circumstances, without costs.

 

 

 
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Published in Labour & Service Law
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