Thursday, 8 October 2015

"Hon’ble Supreme Court in that order, no recovery of excess payment can be made from retired employees or employee who are due to retire within one year of the order of recovery. Since recovery of excess salary has been done after retirement of applicant, such recovery is not in accordance with law."


Original Application No. 694 of 2013

Jabalpur, this Tuesday, the 19th day of May, 2015


K. L. Phoolmali, S/o late Umarao Phoolmali,

DOB 07.1.1952, R/o JM-70, KIshore Nagar,

Meera Kishan Kunj, District Khandwa – 450001 (MP) - Applicant

(By Advocate - Shri Vijay Tripathi)

V e r s u s

1. Union of India through its Secretary
Ministry of Communication & IT, Department of Posts,
Dak Bhawan, Sansad Marg, New Delhi – 110001.

2. Chief Postmaster Master General, Madhya Pradesh Circle,
Hoshangabad Road, Bhopal – 462012 (MP)

4. Senior Superintendent of Post Offices,
Khandwa Division, Khandwa (MP) 450001 - Respondents

(By Advocate – Shri Amjad Ahmed, Proxy counsel of Shri A. T. Faridee)
(Date of reserving order : 14.05.2015)


The applicant has preferred this Original Application for the following reliefs:

“8(i) Summon the entire relevant record from the possession of respondents for its kind perusal;

8(ii) Upon holding that reducing the basic pay of the applicant as Rs.19960/- is bad in law, command the respondents to calculate all retiral dues and pension of the applicant on the basis of the last basic of Rs. 20,410/-

8(iii) Direct the respondents to revise the pension, DCRG, leave encashment, commuted value of pension and pay arrears of the aforesaid amount with 18% interest p.a.;

8(iv) Direct the respondent to repay the amount of DCRG of Rs.43,790/- to the applicant with 18% interest;

8(v) Any other order/orders, direction/directions may also be passed.

8(vi) Award cost of the litigation to the applicant.

8(vii) Set aside the order dated 30.10.2012 (Annexure A/1), order dated 6.8.2012 (Annexure A/2) and order dated 4.4.2012 (Annexure R/7) with all consequential benefits.”

2. The learned counsel for applicant submitted that at the time of retirement, applicant was holding the post of Deputy Post Master, Khandwa Head Office in the Pay Band of Rs.9300-34800/- + Grade Pay of Rs.4600/- and his basic pay was Rs.20,410/-. However, while paying him retiral dues, the basic pay has been reduced from 20,410/- to 19,960/-. Further, Rs.43,790/- has been deducted from his DCRG, without assigning any reason. The applicant was inducted in the cadre of HSG (II) in the pay scale of Rs.5000-8000 and posted as Deputy Post Master at Itarsi Head Office. Thereafter, vide the order dated 12.1.2005, the applicant was sent on deputation to work as Sub Post Master, Harda in the cadre of HSG (I) and he was given the pay scale of Rs.6500-10500/-. Appointment of applicant in the cadre of HSG (I) was approved by the Departmental Promotion Committee (DPC) and orders were issued on 18.8.2005 (Annexure A-3). Thus, there is no justification for reduction of pay of the applicant for retiral benefits and deduction of Rs.43,790/- from DCRG.

3. The respondents, in their reply, have submitted that the applicant was promoted to HSG (I) grade vide the order dated 18.8.2005, Before that, vide the order dated 12.1.2005, he was posted on HSG (I) grade post of Sub Post Master, Harda Head Post Office by Senior Superintendent of Post Offices, Hoshangabad. Since the applicant was working at that time with the office of Sr. Superintendent Post Offices, Hoshangabad, there was no ground for posting him on deputation basis in one of its offices. Thus, applicant was not entitled to the pay of HSG (I) grade on this posting at Harda as he was still in HSG (II) grade. In any case, applicant was promoted to HSG (II) grade on 29.10.2004 and had qualifying service of only two months as on 1.1.2005 in that grade, he could not have been promoted to HSG (I) grade so early as the qualifying service of three years was required for such promotion. Therefore, when his pension case was prepared, there was objection in regard to his pay fixation on 17.1.2005 in HSG (I) grade when he joined at Harda in compliance of order dated 12.1.2005 of SSPO Hoshangabad. Therefore, applicant’s pay was accordingly refixed and he was grated HSG(I) grade w.e.f. 23.08.2005 when he was actually promoted to that grade. Thus, due to correction of his pay fixation w.e.f 17.1.2005, his basic pay at the time of retirement was changed and applicant has been paid retiral benefits accordingly. Further, excess salary paid to him during this period has been recovered from the DCRG. Thus, the OA, being without any merit, deserves to be dismissed.

4. Heard the learned counsel for the parties and perused the pleadings of the respective parties and documents annexed therewith. I have also gone throught the writtern arguments filled by learned counsel for the respondents.

5. It is undisputed that the applicant was promoted to HSG (I) grade vide the order dated 18.8.2005 (Annexure A-3). Before that, he claims to be posted on deputation basis on a post of HSG (I) grade. However, the order dated 12.1.2005 (Annexure R-1) by which he was posted as Sub Post Master, Harda was issued by Sr. Superintendent of Post Offices, Hoshangabad and since the applicant was already working in his jurisdiction, this posting could not be considered as on deputation. In-fact, this is simply a posting order on vacant post of Sub Post Master, Harda on which the applicant was posted on his own cost for which he may have requested at that time. Thus, applicant was not entitled to get the pay scale of HSG (I) grade w.e.f. 17.1.2005 on the basis of order dated 12.01.2005 (Annexure R-1). Therefore, respondents are not at fault in re-fixing his pay, by treating him promoted to HSG (I) grade w.e.f. 23.08.2005. In view of this correction, basic pay of applicant has been revised and applicant has been paid all the retiral benefits based on this pay. Thus, the respondents cannot be faulted in granting retiral benefits to the applicant based on his revised basic pay of Rs.19,960/- in place of Rs.20,410/-, and no interference with the orders of respondents in this matter, is justified, Therefore, the prayer of the applicant in this regard is rejected.

6. So far as deduction of Rs.43,790/- from the DCRG of the applicant is concerned, this amount has been deducted without issuance of any show-cause notice to the applicant. Relying on the judgment of Hon’ble Supreme Court in the matters of State of Punjab and others etc v. Rafiq Masih (White Washer) etc., Civil Appeal No. 11527 of 2014, learned counsel for the applicant submitted that in view of the law laid down by the Hon’ble Supreme Court in that order, no recovery of excess payment can be made from retired employees or employee who are due to retire within one year of the order of recovery. Since recovery of excess salary has been done after retirement of applicant, such recovery is not in accordance with law. Therefore, the respondents are directed to refund Rs.43,790/- deducted from DCRG of the applicant, within a period of 60 days from the date of communication of this order. However, no interest shall be payable on that amount.

7. Thus, the O.A is partly allowed. No order on costs.

(G. P. Singhal)
Administrative Member

Paperless Movement Will Benefit International Trade: CBEC Chief

New Delhi: The Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC), Chairman, Najib Shah took a host of measures in the coming days to further improve ease of doing business and make international trading paperless.
CBEC Chairman Najib Shah Thursday addressing the  delegates in 11th Asia- Europe Meeting of Customs Directors General-Commissioners, at Panaji, Goa.
CBEC Chairman Najib Shah Thursday addressing the delegates in 11th Asia- Europe Meeting of Customs Directors General-Commissioners, at Panaji, Goa.
Speaking of the importance of reducing transaction costs for trade facilitation in keeping with the government of India’s flagship programme Digital India, Shah said incorporating paperless trade is one initiative India is committed towards.
“Incorporating the concept into the supply chain would surely be a game changer resulting in enormous benefits for international trade. In this digital era, building systems to support digital handshake with every stakeholder, so as to ensure paperless movement of cross border trade is one of the main concerts of every customs administration.” Shah said during his inaugural address at the 11th edition of the Asia Europe Meeting (ASEM) of the directors general-commissioners of customs in Goa.
He encouraged the 100-odd heads of customs administrations and delegates from 30 Asian and 21 European counties present to search for ways to make customs the foremost enabler in creating an environment towards paperless trade.
In India, it is a declared policy to share data between customs, central excise, service tax and direct taxes and Shah also stressed the importance of cooperation between customs and tax authorities recommending collaboration among these training institutions.

Centre To Employees: You’ll Face Consequences If You Fail To Perform

New Delhi: Central government has told government servants’ fraternity that they will face “consequences” if they fail performance of their duty. 
Union Roads, Highways and Shipping Minister Nitin Gadkari issued this warning for delay in bureaucratic file pushing system.
Gadkari delivered this harsh message to central government employees in an interview with The Economic Times.
Gadkari strongly opposed the delay in file pushing system in central government offices.
In the interview he said that he had asked his officials to bring out a work tender last year but they didn’t do it for a year.
So, he told them that Modi government was the regime for high performance and they had to decide on their performance for running their jobs.
He said, “Earlier, officials were not answerable to anyone. We can’t allow investors to lose money because of delays on officials’ part. A country doesn’t work like that.”
He added, “If salary of any employee is delayed, how frustrating is it for him? So, if someone is investing Rs 2,000 crore and employees are delaying his file by three months how much money does the investor lose on interest. We are encouraging government employees who do good work. Government employees who are not working have to face consequences.”
The minister also confirmed that the Prime Minister Narendra Modi has allowed him to get talent from outside for appointment the Chairman of Shipping Corporation of India and he asked a top executive from private sector who is drawing Rs 16 crore a year but government can’t pay more than Rs 30-40 lakhs for year.
The Minister tried to convince him that he should do this job for his country not for money. Accordingly, the process of salary negotiation with the top executive from outside for appointment of the Chairman of Shipping Corporation of India has started.

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

SC Stops Use Of Aadhaar Card For Salary And Pension

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday refused to modify its August 11 order that restricts the use of the Aadhaar card only to LPG and Public Distribution System schemes. The three-judge bench said the government’s plea to extend the card scheme to more subsidies, salaries, pension disbursement and added that schemes like Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana must be dealt with by the Constitution Bench to which the matter has been referred to.
Additionally, no date has been specified as to when the larger bench would commence the hearing.
Financial bodies like the RBI, Sebi, IRDA, TRAI, Pension Fund Regulatory Authority and states like Gujarat and Jharkhand too, had similar pleas before the court which has been rejected.
In its September 2013 interim order, the apex court ruled that the card would not made mandatory in the use of government services.
It also ordered that nobody should be deprived of such facilities for want of the card.
The bench was hearing a batch of pleas against decisions of some states to make Aadhaar cards compulsory for a range of activities including payment of salary, provident fund disbursement, marriage and property registration.
The Centre’s counsel is likely to mention as Thursday for urgent hearing of the case.

CBEC To Host 11th Asia Europe Meeting In Goa

05-10-201511th Asian Europe Meeting (ASEM) of the Directors General-Commissioners of Customs in Goa

 The Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) will host the 11th Asia Europe Meeting (ASEM) of the Directors General, Commissioners of Customs here on October 8-9. The meeting will be chaired by CBEC Chairman Najib Shah. India is hosting the Head of Customs administrations meeting for the first time since joining the ASEM forum in 2008, an official CBEC note issued here today said. Heads of Customs administrations and delegates from 53 member States of ASEM — 30 from Asia, 21 from Europe and two international organisations, namely European Commission and the ASEAN Secretariat — are expected to attend the meet.

Kunio Mikuriya, Secretary General, World Customs Organisation (WCO) shall be present at the event as an observer, the release said.
Established in 1996, ASEM aims to strengthen the Asia-Europe relations and in this direction provides opportunities for dialogues and cooperation between countries of Asia and Europe in wide areas covering politics, economy, culture and others, it said.
Cooperation in Customs matters between Asia and Europe is an important element of the ASEM framework and the Directors General and Commissioners of Customs of ASEM meet biennially to discuss current developments and priorities of Customs work.
The two-day meeting will focus on the five main priorities of ASEM – trade facilitation and supply chain security, combating infringement on IPR, protection of society and environment, involving business, and communication and visibility.
The participants will deliberate on a new action plan for 2016-17 which shall reflect the priorities of Customs administrations as they face the twin challenges of facilitating trade and ensuring legal compliance as global trade volumes rise, the release added.