Title: Hansraj vs Commissioner of police & Anr.
Judgment delivered on: July 12, 2023
+ W.P.(C) 6490/2021
CORAM: HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE V. KAMESWAR RAO
HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE ANOOP KUMAR MENDIRATTA
Delhi High Court dismissed the writ petition filed against the order of the Central Administrative Tribunal, Principal Bench, New Delhi (‘Tribunal’, for short) in Original Application No.4666/2014 (‘OA’, for short) whereby the Tribunal has dismissed the OA filed by three persons including the petitioner herein.
Facts of the case
The ruling dated March 10, 2014, which allowed the petitioner(s) to argue that their training period should be counted when they were promoted to Head Constable (Assistant Wireless Operator) (‘HC (AWO)’, was challenged in the OA by the petitioner(s) therein was rejected for the purpose of increment(s).
The petitioner Hansraj (who filed this case) was first hired as a constable on August 7, 1991, and on August 7, 2000, he was elevated (absorbed) to the position of HC (AWO) in the Delhi Police’s Communication Unit. The appointment of Radio (Wireless) and MT Staff is governed by Rule 17 of the Delhi Police (Appointment and Recruitment) Rules, 1980 (the “Rules of 1980,” for short), and the appointment of AWOs and Teleprinter Operators (HC) is governed by Rule 17-B(IV). The appointment of Assistant Wireless Operator Grade-III (HC) and Teleprinter Operator Grade-III (HC) in the Delhi Police is covered by Standing Order No. 223/86, which is in line with Rule 17-B(IV) of the modified Rules, 1986, read in conjunction with Rule 13(ii) of the Rules of 1980. Following completion of the VHR R.T. Course Grade-III and six months of radio operator experience, confirmed (Matriculate) Constables were to be given the opportunity to be promoted to the coveted position.
According to the office order, a preliminary selection test was held, and those who received 33% or higher on each paper were chosen to enrol in the AWOs / Teleprinter Operator (HC) programme for a total of nine months, including three months of practical training, in batches. The constables are expected to take a test administered by the Trade Test Board, designated by the Commissioner of Delhi Police, after completing the AWO/TPO Grade-III Course, and they must receive the appropriate score in accordance with Standing Order No. 223/86.
According to Rules from 1980, the names of the constables chosen by the DPC are listed on List B (Technical) in the order of their seniority in the rank of Constable in their respective categories A promotion order is then issued in accordance with Rule 7 of the Rules of 1980.
Analysis of the court
The order dated March 10, 2014, which was based on the petitioner/applicants’ representations on October 8, 2013 and November 27, 2013, was challenged before the Tribunal. In their representations, they requested that the training period for promotion to the post of HC (AWO) be counted for the purpose of increment(s) in the scale of the concerned post.
AWO/Teleprinter Operator (HC) Course for a period of nine months, including three months of practical training in batches according to the merit list, followed by AWO/Teleprinter Operator (HC) Course for a period of nine months, including three months of practical training in batches according to the merit list, which is also followed by a test conducted by the Trade Test Board, may be stated here. According to the respondents’ position, which was noted above, it is clear that the final promotion order to the post
Accordingly, promotion orders are issued and the chosen constables are added to List B (Technical) in the order of their seniority. Direct recruiting does not follow the aforementioned process. There is unquestionably no reason to calculate the training time for the purpose of awarding increment(s), much less on the post of Head Constable, when the constable is still in the training phase and has not been officially or by an order promoted to that position. Only after receiving an order of promotion as HC (AWO) would a constable begin serving in the position of head constable. The petitioner’s claim that the training duration is not taken into account for the purpose of increment(s) in the grade of Constable
In other words, the petitioner was working as a constable during the training period rather than a Head Constable; as a result, the time would only be relevant for the purpose of awarding an increase on the position of Constable and not Head Constable. We previously discussed the respondents’ position on why a directly hired HC (AWO) / Teleprinter Operator is entitled to the scale of Head Constable; specifically, that the straight recruit Head Constable must complete training after being hired as HC (AWO) / Teleprinter Operator.
The Madras High Court’s ruling in Nuclear Power Corporation & Anr. (supra), in which OMs dated October 22, 1990 and March 31, 1992 were mentioned, is not applicable to the facts of this case, especially in light of the position under the Rules of 1980. In the aforementioned instance, the Department of Atomic Energy; Madras Atomic Power Project, an enterprise of the Government of India, issued an invitation for applications to the post of Stipendiary Trainees under several employment categories. A number of applicants were chosen and hired as stipendiary trainees with combined monthly compensation. The trainees were assimilated and assigned to the regular positions of Tradesman-B, bearing the normal time scale of pay, and Apprentice after successfully completing the training term. In accordance with how well they performed during the training time, they were also granted one or two increments. According to the DoP&T’s OM dated October 22, 1990, a person who is chosen for a regular appointment and who must complete training before officially taking over the post may be treated as working for the purpose of receiving raises during the training period, whether they are receiving pay or a stipend. The benefit in question was given starting on October 1, 1990. A second OM, issued March 31, 1992, extended the same benefit to government employees who had received the training on or after January 1, 1986, with real benefits beginning on October 1, 1990. This OM was the one that came after the first.
Here, it is not the case. As a matter of fact, the aforementioned OMs apply to the position of HC (AWO)/Teleprinter Operator when the appointment is made through direct recruiting, but not to the position of HC (AWO) when the appointment is made through promotion.
Therefore, we believe that the Tribunal’s decision to dismiss the OA cannot be criticised. We find no justification for interfering with the Tribunal’s contested order. The writ petition is rejected because it lacks any merit.
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Written By – Shreyanshu Gupta