HIGH COURT OF DELHI AT NEW DELHI
Subject : Seniority In Service
Decided On: July 15, 2004.
Mrs.Leelamma Gigi ...Petitioners
through Mr.R.K.Saini and
The District and Sessions Judge, Delhi & anr. ...Respondents
through Ms.Geeta Luthra and
Ms.Jhum Jhum Sarkar,
Manmohan Sarin, J (Oral)
With the consent of the parties, writ petition is taken up for disposal.
2.Petitioner, Ms.Leelamma Gigi, was appointed as a Lower Division Clerk (LDC) on 4.12.1985 in the District Courts. By this writ petition, petitioner seeks a mandamus, directing respondent No.1 to regularize her as a Stenographer in the pay scale of Rs.1200-2040 from the date of her initial appointment. It is based on her claim that from the date of appointment, she has functioned as a Stenographer only. Directions are also sought to respondents to give salary, benefits, allowance etc., from the date of initial appointment on the analogy of equal pay for equal work. Consequential seniority is also claimed.
3.Mr.R.K.Saini, counsel for the petitioner, submitted that from the date of her initial appointment and joining i.e. 10.12.1985, she was deputed as a Stenographer. She worked regularly as Stenographer. To support this, Mr.Saini, referred to numerous orders, namely, Annexure P-4 to Annexure P-15. By the aforesaid orders, the term of appointment of the petitioner as ad hoc Stenographer was extended from time to time. The last being up to 28.2.1994 in the pay scale of Rs.1200-2040. Respondents having not regularized or confirmed her as a Stenographer.
4.Petitioner filed the present writ petition on 18.2.1994. Respondents have filed the counter affidavit, raising objections to the maintainability of the writ petition on the ground that regularization would entail violation of Section 4 of the Employment Exchange (Compulsory Notification of Vacancies) Act, 1954. During the course of submissions, considering the initial appointment as L.D.C., was pursuant to the registration with the Employment Exchange, learned counsel for the respondents does not press this objection.
5. Respondents have averred in the writ petition that some of the ad hoc Stenographers had filed a writ petition in the High Court of Delhi, bearing No.878/86 titled Ghanshyam Dass & Ors. Vs.District & Sessions Judge, Delhi. Apart from this, they had also filed a petition in the Supreme Court bearing No.413/90, titled Vijay Kumar & Ors. Vs.District and Sessions Judge, Delhi. It is stated that certain directions were given by the Division Bench of Delhi High Court and Supreme Court, for holding special test to enable ad hoc Stenographers to sit in the said examination and claim regularization. The case of the respondents is that the petitioner failed in the special test, which was conducted in the year 1992. She declined to appear in the test held in the year 1993, 1995 and 1996. Learned counsel for the respondents states that it is only on 21.10.2002, when petitioner passed the test that she has been granted regularization and appointed as a regular Stenographer.
6.Mr.Saini next contended that petitioner had qualified in the shorthand and typing test but had failed to clear the Hindi test, held in the year 1992. Learned counsel submits that the Supreme Court had only directed a special test to be carried out which was to be of shorthand and typing and there was no occasion for the respondents to a hold test in Hindi and then reject the petitioner's candidature on the ground that she failed in Hindi test. He submits that special test, as directed by the Supreme Court, was intended to be a test in shorthand and typing and not a test for proficiency in Hindi or English and no written test other than a test of shorthand and typing was required.
7. Mr.Geeta Luthra has placed on record a circular of 16.11.1992, which reads as under:-
"A written Test in English for the post of Stenographers in the pay scale of Rs.1200-2040 is being held by this office on 29.11.1992 at 10.30 A.M. The officials of this office, who knows Shorthand may submit their applications by 21.11.1992 for appearing in the Written Test. The syllabus of the Written Test is as under:-
1. Essay Writing.
2. Translation from Hindi to English
& English to Hindi.
ii)Fill in the blanks.
iii)Making the sentences of certain proverbs."
8. It is stated by Ms.Luthra that all the ad hoc Stenographers, who have been regularized passed the special test held pursuant to the directions of the Supreme Court. The said test included a test of Essay writing, translation from Hindi to English and English to Hindi, Grammar etc. This being the position, I am not inclined to entertain the writ petition on the ground that rejection of her candidature was wrong on account of the written test in Hindi being conducted. It is noticed that the Supreme Court while giving directions did not specify or restrict the special test to be a test in shorthand and typing only.
9. It was thus open for the respondents to hold written test and prescribe the syllabus for the same. There is also a source of rationale and justification for the same. The language in District Courts is English. Nevertheless generally evidence when recorded is spoken in vernacular. Hence a good working knowledge of Hindi and English is required by the Stenographer to correctly record the dictation. Keeping these factors in mind, the decision of the respondents to include in their syllabus a test for judging the proficiency in the languages cannot be said to be arbitrary or capricious exercise of discretion.
The writ petition is dismissed.
July 15, 2004 Manmohan Sarin,J.