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An Employer Cannot Appeal Against An Award Of Compensation Under Clause (A) Of Section 30 (1) Of The Act, Unless There Is A Memo Of Appeal By A Certificate Issued By The Commissioner

Abizer Merchant ,
  15 November 2022       Share Bookmark

Court :
High Court Of Jammu & Kashmir And Ladakh At Jammu
Brief :

Citation :
MA No. 566/2010; IA No. 823/2010

CAUSE TITLE:
Divisional Manager JKSFC Bhaderwah Vs Mohammad Sharief

DATE OF ORDER:
09/11/2022

JUDGE:
HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE RAJESH SEKHRI, JUDGE

PARTIES:
Appellant: Divisional Manager, JKSFC Bhaderwah
Respondent: Mohammad Sharief

Subject

The Court in this case dealt with the issue of an appeal against compensation under S.30(1), barred unless a certificate is issued by the commissioner on regards to the interest paid.

IMPORTANT PROVISION

  • S.30(1) Workmen’s Compensation Act
  • S.30(1)(a), (aa) Workmen’s Compensation Act

The section says the award of interest on the penalty, and compensation in a lump sum form either redeemable by half-monthly payments or disallowing a claim in full or in part for a lump sum

  • S.4 Workmen’s Compensation Act

The section talks about the amount of compensation to be granted.

  • S.5 Workmen’s Compensation Act

This section provides with a method to calculate wages

  • S.10 Workmen’s Compensation Act

A Commissioner will not consider a claim for compensation unless notice of the accident has been given.

  • S.30 Workmen’s Compensation Act

The Section talks about appeals

BRIEF FACTS

On 06/07/1998 the respondent Mr. Mohammad Sareif was met with an accident and was injured subsequently, while in the employment of Pathroo Work in Compartment No. 7, Point No. 2, the respondent was then admitted to District Hospital, Doda and he was stated to have a left knee joint dislocation, cut injuries on body at multiple spots which resulted in a permanent disablement.

The respondent then filed a compensation claim before the Commissioner under Workmen’s Compensation Act (Assistant Labour Commissioner) Doda, (for short “ALC”), in which his claim was rejected on 29/05/2002 on the grounds that he wasn’t entitled as he was not able to prove that he was in the accident while under the employment of the appellant.

The respondent then appealed against the rejection on 12/10/2006 and stated that the decision passed by the ACL Doda has failed to acknowledge the evidence in proper manner, the court set aside the order passed by ACL Doda on 28/06/2010 and the matter was taken back into consideration. The appellant was said to pay compensation of Rs. 1,32,602/- with interest @ 12 % per annum from the date of accident within 30 days from the date of the award, failing which, the amount has been ordered to be recovered as per Section 31 of the Workmen’s Compensation Act.

Arguments advanced

Appellant

The appellant has challenged the impugned award on the grounds that learned ALC Doda ignored the provisions of the Workmen's Compensation Act and the rules framed the reunder in passing the award.

The disputed award violated the principles of Sections 4, 5, and 10 of the Act. According to the appellant, the respondent never served it with notice of the alleged accident, and the impugned award is silent on the criteria used by the authority below to determine the respondent's wages. The appellant further contends that because the J&K State Forest Corporation, a necessary party, was not named as a party in the proceedings before the ALC, the appellant could not be held liable. The appellant also argued that the deposition amount of interest which was imposed in addition to the compensation amount is not a condition for filling an appeal. The appellant referred to these cases:

  • United India Insurance Company Vs. Shaik Alimuddin and anr.; [1994 (3) ALT 321]
  • The Executive Engineer (Electrical), Karnataka 5 MA No. 566/2010
  • Electricity Board, Hubli and anr. Vs. Hajarat Ali Mailasab and anr.; [(1999) ACC 377]
  • Sasa Enterprises Vs. Pramod Kumar; [1(1984) ACC 455]

RESPONDENT

In accordance with Section 30 of the Workmen's Compensation Act, learned counsel for the respondent raised a preliminary objection to the maintainability of the current appeal, arguing that no appeal should be filed on the grounds that no appeal should be preferred by an employer unless certificate of the Commissioner is filed along with the appeal to the effect that appellant had deposited the amount payable under the order assailed in the appeal. The appellant was directed by learned ALC Doda to deposit the compensation plus the interest at 12% per annum from the date of the accident, i.e., from 06.08.1998, within 30 days of the date of the passing of the judgement.

The present appeal is not maintainable because the appellant has deposited only the compensation amount and not the interest on the impugned award. The respondent relied upon these cases :

  • Director General, BSF and ors. Vs. Mohd. Maqbool Gakdho and ors. reported as 2017 (1) JKJ 274, M/s L.R
  • Ferro Alloys Ltd. Vs. Mahavir Mahto and anr (decided by Hon’ble Supreme Court on 21.11.2000 in civil appeal No. 150/1999)
  • Ramakant Rout alias Routray Vs. Prafulla Kumar Dass and anr. reported as 1993 ACJ 496

JUDGEMENT

The High court of JAMMU & KASHMIR AND LADAKH observed that an employer cannot appeal against an award of compensation under Clause (a) of Section 30 (1) of the Act, unless there is a memo of appeal by a certificate issued by the commissioner to the effect that the appellant had deposited the amount which was payable under the order which is being appealed against, but there is no such certificate required by an employer regarding the award of interest or penalty under Section 30(1)(a) and section 30(1)(aa) of the Act, The certificate relating to the payment of compensation under Section 30(1)(a) of the Act would suffice, and no certificate relating to the payment of interest or penalty under Section 30(1)(b) of the Act would be required.

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