STATE OF ODISHA & ORS. ETC.ETC. VS SULEKH CHANDRA PRADHAN ETC. ETC

STATE OF ODISHA & ORS. ETC.ETC. VS SULEKH CHANDRA PRADHAN ETC. ETC

Landmark Cases of India / सुप्रीम कोर्ट के ऐतिहासिक फैसले


REPORTABLE
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION 
CIVIL APPEAL NOS.3036­3064  OF 2022
[Arising out of Special Leave Petition (Civil) No.22987­
23015 of 2019]
STATE OF ODISHA & ORS. ETC.ETC.     ...APPELLANT(S)
VERSUS
SULEKH CHANDRA PRADHAN ETC.
ETC.       ...RESPONDENT(S)
JUDGMENT
B.R. GAVAI, J.
1. Leave granted. 
2. The   appellants   –   State   of   Odisha   and   others   have
approached this Court, being aggrieved by the judgment and
order  dated  20th  December,   2018,  delivered  by  the   Division
Bench of the High Court of Orissa at Cuttack in a batch of writ
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petitions being Writ Petition (Civil) No. 6557 of 2018 along with
connected matters, thereby dismissing the said writ petitions
filed by the appellants – State of Odisha and others, challenging
the   judgments   and   orders   delivered   by   the   Odisha
Administrative   Tribunal   (hereinafter   referred   to   as   “the
Tribunal”),   Bhubaneswar   Bench,   Bhubaneswar/Cuttack
Bench, Cuttack dated 18th May, 2017 in O.A. No. 2266 of 2015
along with connected matters and 30th January, 2018 in O.A.
No.3420 (C) of 2015 along with connected matters.  
3. Vide   order   dated   18th  May,   2017,   delivered   in   O.A.
No.2266 of 2015 along with connected matters, the Tribunal,
Bhubaneswar Bench had allowed the Original Applications filed
by the applicants therein (respondents herein), thereby setting
aside the termination of the applicants (respondents herein)
and   directing/allowing   them   to   continue   as   Government
servant as third teacher/Assistant Teacher in Middle English
Schools (hereinafter referred to as “M.E. Schools”) with effect
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from 1st April, 2011, as regular teacher.  Vide order dated 30th
January, 2018, the Tribunal, Cuttack Bench followed its earlier
order dated 18th May, 2017 and granted the same relief to 137
Hindi Teachers. 
4. The parties are referred herein as they are referred to in
the Original Applications.  
5. The facts giving rise to the present appeals are as under:
6. All the applicants joined the Aided M.E. School as Hindi
Teachers,   in   or   around   1988­89.     The   applicant­Sulekh
Chandra Pradhan (respondent No.1 herein) in the lead case
before the Tribunal, Bhubaneswar Bench, i.e., O.A. No.2266 of
2015, was appointed on 21st  June, 1988 and joined on 23rd
June, 1988, as Hindi Teacher at Nrusingha Jena M.E. School,
Naginipur in District Kendrapada.  The appointment of the said
applicant was made by the Managing Committee of the said
School.  
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7. On 12th May, 1992, the Government of Orissa, Education
Department issued a resolution, thereby taking over all M.E.
Schools situated in the State of Odisha with effect from 1st
April, 1991.  Though the Government took over all the teachers
including non­teaching staff of the M.E. School as Government
servants, Hindi Teachers were not taken over as Government
servants   and   therefore,   the   services   of   the   applicants   were
automatically terminated.  Aggrieved thereby, on 2nd July, 1993,
Sulekh Chandra Pradhan (respondent No.1 herein), approached
the High Court of Orissa at Cuttack by way of Writ Petition
being OJC No. 3042 of 1993, thereby raising a grievance that
the benefits extended to Hindi Teachers in terms of the letter of
the  Deputy Director, Sanskrit, Hindi and  Special  Education
(hereinafter referred to as “the Deputy Director”) dated 1st May,
1992 were not being extended to him.   It was asserted that
though he possessed the requisite qualification, he was not
being   absorbed   against   the   third   teacher   post   in   the   M.E.
School where he was earlier working.   The Division Bench of
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the High Court, vide judgment and order dated 2nd July, 1993,
disposed of the said writ petition by directing the Director of
Elementary Education, Orissa (hereinafter referred to as “the
Director”), to look into the grievances of the petitioner therein
(i.e. Sulekh Chandra Pradhan) within four months from the
date of receipt of the order.  
8. On 7th January, 1994, the Government of Orissa issued a
clarification that the letter dated 1st  May, 1992 of the Deputy
Director   addressed   to   all   Inspectors   of   Schools/all   District
Inspector of Schools, was applicable only to the teachers, who
were   appointed   against   sanctioned   posts   and   were   drawing
their salaries from the Government fund under Plan and nonplan scheme.  By the said communication dated 1st May, 1992,
the   Deputy   Director   had   clarified   that   Hindi   being   a   nonexaminable subject in M.E. Schools, there was no need to allow
the existing Hindi Teachers in M.E. Schools to continue further.
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9. It appears that in pursuance to the orders of the High
Court, the Government of Orissa addressed a letter dated 29th
September, 1995 to the Director, thereby informing that the
Government   had   decided   to   adjust   such   Hindi   Teachers
appointed by the Managing Committee within the yardstick in
UP (ME) Schools as Assistant Teachers in the taken over M.E.
Schools either in vacant posts of Assistant Teacher or in the
post of Hindi Teacher to be created in such schools or in other
schools in relaxation of the qualifications, prescribed for the
third   teachers.     Vide   the   said   communication   dated   29th
September,   1995,   the   Director   was   asked   to   ascertain   the
names of the Hindi Teachers along with their qualification from
the concerned District Inspector of Schools.  In response to the
same, the Director immediately informed the Government that
since the appointments were made beyond the yardstick and
against the provisions of Odisha Education (Recruitment and
Conditions of Service of Teachers and Members of the Staff of
Aided   Educational   Institutions)   Rules,   1974   (hereinafter
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referred   to   as   “the   said   Rules”),   the   reference   to   District
Inspector of Schools to furnish the names and qualifications of
such   Hindi   Teachers   would   lead   to   every   possibility   for
manipulation of the office records.  It was also pointed out that
such   an   exercise   may   enable   to   sponsor   names   of   Hindi
Teachers for approval by making back­dated appointments.  It
was therefore recommended that cases of only such Teachers
who had filed the writ application between 12th May, 1992 and
12th  May, 1993, i.e.,  within  a  year after taking over of  the
schools should be considered as one time measure.  
10. Vide   communication   dated   21st  May,   1996,   the
Government   of   Orissa   informed   the   Director   that   the
Government has decided to adjust 137 Hindi Teachers in M.E.
Schools.  It appears that vide communication dated 17th June,
1996, the Government of Orissa also informed the Director that
while examining the original papers of Hindi Teachers, their
Acquaintance Roll should be verified by the District Inspector of
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Schools.  It further appears that vide communication dated 21st
August, 1996, the Government of Orissa informed the Director
that   no   action   be   taken   in   pursuance   to   its   earlier
letters/communications dated 21st  May, 1996 and 17th  June,
1996, until further orders of the State Government.  
11. Ignoring   the   letter/communication   dated   21st  August,
1996,   the   respective   District   Inspector   of   Schools   issued
appointment order dated 27th  August, 1996 in favour of the
applicant   –   respondent   No.   1   herein.     Noticing   this,   the
Directorate   of   Elementary   Education,   Orissa,   Bhubaneswar
addressed a communication/letter dated 1st  October, 1996 to
the   District   Inspector   of   Schools   informing   that   all
appointments made by them should be kept in abeyance.   It
appears that on the basis of the said communication dated 1st
October, 1996, the services of the applicants/Hindi Teachers
were discontinued with effect from 4th November, 1996.   On 5th
September,   1998,   the   Government   of   Orissa   addressed   a
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communication   to   the   Director,   stating   therein   that   the
Government has withdrawn its G.O. No.31360 SME dated 29th
September, 1995.  
12. It is the contention of the State Government that the Joint
Secretary to the Government of Orissa, Department of School
and   Mass   Education   addressed   a   communication   dated   7th
July, 2009 to the Director, stating therein that the Government
had decided to adjust the services of 137 Hindi Teachers in
M.E. Schools as Assistant Teachers against the vacant posts.
Vide   another   communication   dated   2nd  February,   2011,   the
office of the Director informed the District Inspectors of Schools
that   a   committee   constituted   and   headed   by   them   should
scrutinize   the   original   papers   of   Hindi   Teachers   and
acquaintance roll of the incumbents should be verified with
reference to the cash book of the School from the date of their
joining before the adjustment of such teachers.  In pursuance
to the aforesaid communication dated 2nd February, 2011, the
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applicants/respondents were appointed on 31st March, 2011 as
Assistant Teachers.  
13. It   appears   that   certain   teachers   had   approached   the
Tribunal by filing various applications, thereby challenging the
order  dated 1st  October, 1996  and 4th  November, 1996, vide
which the appointment of teachers were kept in abeyance.  One
of such applications being O.A. No.4029(2) of 1996 came to be
rejected by the Tribunal by order dated 12th  April, 2012.   It
appears that one another application being O.A. No.3800 (C) of
2012 was filed by one Nimai Charan Dash, seeking a direction
to   quash   the   order   dated   21st  August,   2012   whereby   the
representation   of   the   applicant   therein   to   adjust   him   as   a
regular teacher came to be rejected.  The said application came
to be rejected by the Tribunal, Cuttack Bench vide order dated
23rd  September,   2013.       While   rejecting   the   said   O.A.   the
Tribunal,   Cuttack   Bench,   directed   a   detailed   enquiry   to   be
conducted through the Vigilance Department.  
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14. In the enquiry, it was found that the letter dated 7th July,
2009 of the Government of Orissa addressed to the Director to
adjust   137   Hindi   Teachers   as   Assistant   Teachers   against
vacant posts was issued by suppressing its earlier letter dated
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th September, 1998, whereby the letter dated 29th September,
1995   to   adjust   the   Hindi   Teachers   was   withdrawn.     The
Government   of   Orissa,   therefore,   vide   communication   dated
26th February, 2014, directed the Director to remove 137 Hindi
Teachers, who were illegally adjusted by the concerned District
Inspector   of   Schools.     Accordingly,   the   services   of   the
applicants/Teachers came to be terminated with effect from
15th March, 2014.  
15. The   applicants,   being   aggrieved   by   their   termination
approached the High Court by way of Writ Petitions being Writ
Petition (Civil) No.6747 of 2014 and other writ petitions.  The
High Court vide order dated 9th  May, 2014, delivered in Writ
Petition (Civil) No.6747 of 2014, found that the termination was
11
done without following the principles of natural justice and as
such, set aside the same. However, liberty was granted to the
State to proceed against the petitioner therein (i.e., Ramesh
Kumar Mohanty) by complying with the Rules governing the
employment of the petitioner therein and the requirement of the
rule of natural justice.  The High Court further directed that the
services/appointments   of   such   of   the   teachers   would   be
continued till the decisions were taken by the authorities after
remand. 
16. In   pursuance   thereof,   the   applicants/teachers   were
reinstated   on   15th  December,   2014.     In   view   of   the   liberty
granted by the High Court, show cause notices were issued to
the applicants on 22nd July, 2015.  Some of the applicants filed
their replies and appeared for personal hearing.  Many of them
chose not to do so.  The services of the applicants came to be
terminated with effect from 22nd August, 2015. Being aggrieved,
a batch of Original Applications came to be filed before the
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Tribunal.     The   same   came   to   be   allowed   by   the   Tribunal,
Bhubaneswar Bench, vide order dated 18th May, 2017, thereby
quashing the show cause notices dated 22nd  July, 2015 and
holding that the applicants were entitled to continue as regular
Government   servants   as   third   teacher/Assistant   Teacher   in
M.E. School with effect from 1st April, 2011. 
17. Vide   another   order   dated   30th  January,   2018,   the
Tribunal, Cuttack Bench, followed the abovementioned order
dated 18th  May, 2017, passed by the Tribunal, Bhubaneswar
Bench and granted similar relief to 137 Hindi Teacher.  
18. Being aggrieved by the judgments and orders dated 18th
May, 2017 and 30th January, 2018 of the Tribunal, the State of
Odisha filed writ petitions before the High Court. The same
were dismissed by the impugned judgment and order dated 20th
December, 2018. Being aggrieved thereby, the present appeals
by   way   of   special   leave   are   filed.     Vide   order   dated   20th
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September, 2019, this Court issued notice and granted stay to
the impugned judgment and order. 
19. We have heard Shri Chander Uday Singh, learned Senior
Counsel appearing on behalf of the appellants, Shri Gaurav
Agrawal,   learned   counsel   appearing   on   behalf   of   the
respondents/teachers and Shri R. Balasubramanian, learned
Senior   Counsel   appearing   on   behalf   of   the
Interveners/applicants.  
20. Shri   Chander   Uday   Singh,   learned   Senior   Counsel
appearing on behalf of the appellants would submit that the
High Court has grossly erred in holding that the State had not
challenged   the   judgment   and   order   dated   18th  May,   2017,
passed by the Tribunal, Bhubaneswar Bench, in O.A. No.2266
of 2015 and other connected cases. He submitted that, as a
matter of fact, Writ Petition (Civil) No.6557 of 2018 was filed
challenging   the   judgment   and   order   dated   18th  May,   2017,
passed by the Tribunal in O.A. No.2266 of 2015 and other
14
connected cases.  He submitted that the High Court has erred
in holding that the teachers had discharged service under the
State   Government   for   more   than   two   decades.   He   further
submitted that the Division Bench of High Court has erred in
holding that the State had meted out discriminatory treatment
amongst   the   teachers.     He   therefore   submits   that   the
judgments and orders passed by the Tribunal as well as the
High Court are not sustainable in law and liable to be set aside.
21. Shri Singh further submitted that the appointments made
are contrary to Rules 5 and 6 of the said Rules and as such, the
appointments   made,  de   hors  the   said   Rules,   cannot   be
sustained.     He   further   submitted   that   the   Tribunal,   while
delivering the judgments and orders dated 18th May, 2017 and
30th  January, 2018, has failed to take into consideration the
earlier orders of the Tribunal dated 25th  June, 2013 and 23rd
September, 2013, vide which the Tribunal had rejected similar
claims made by the Hindi Teachers.  He further submits that,
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as a matter of fact, Sri Antaryami Bal, whose O.A. (No. 2270 of
2015) has been allowed by the Tribunal vide judgment and
order dated 18th May, 2017, was the applicant in O.A. No.4029
(2) of 1996, which was rejected by the Tribunal, Cuttack Bench
by a well­reasoned judgment and order dated 12th April, 2012.
He therefore submits that the judgments and orders of the
Tribunal, which were impugned before the High Court, would
also not be sustainable on the ground of judicial propriety. 
22. On   facts,   Shri   Singh   submitted   that   the
applicants/teachers have worked only between 27th   August,
1996 and 4th  November,1996; between 31st  March, 2011 and
15th March, 2014; and lastly from 15th December, 2014 till 25th
August, 2015. The third period was on account of the orders
passed by the High Court.   He therefore submits that, at the
most, the applicants/teachers have worked approximately for a
period of four years. 
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23. Shri Gaurav Agrawal, learned counsel, would submit that
though the M.E. Schools had a sanction of two posts, i.e., one
post of Headmaster and one post of Assistant Teacher; the
posts of Hindi Teacher were filled in by the Management on
non­grant basis.   He submits that the said Rules would be
applicable only to the appointments made on grant­in­aid basis
and as such, to the post of Headmaster and to the one post of
Assistant Teacher.   Since the applicants/teachers, who were
appointed on a third post, which was on non­grant basis, they
would not be governed by the said Rules.  
24. Shri Agrawal further submits that in pursuance to the
order passed by the Division Bench of the High Court in O.J.C.
No. 3042 of 1993 dated 2nd July, 1993, the State had framed a
policy for absorption of these teachers as a one­time measure.
He submits that prior to their absorption, a detailed scrutiny
and   enquiry   was   required   to  be   done.     He   submits   that   if
applicants/teachers were absorbed in pursuance to the policy,
17
which was framed in pursuance to the directions of the High
Court,   the   termination   would   be   bad   in   law.   He   therefore
submits   that   no   interference   would   be   warranted   with   the
judgments and orders passed by the Tribunal and the High
Court. 
25. Shri   R.   Balasubramanian,   learned   Senior   Counsel
appearing on behalf of the interveners/applicants would submit
that similar matters, i.e., O.A. No. 3420(C) of 2015 and other
connected matters have been allowed by the Tribunal vide order
dated 30th  January, 2018. He submits that the order of the
Tribunal was confirmed/affirmed by the High Court vide order
dated 11th April, 2018 passed in Writ Petition (Civil) No.21661
of 2017.  He submits that the Special Leave Petition (Civil) D.
No.40252 of 2018 challenging the same has been rejected by
this   Court   vide   order   dated   19th  July,   2019.     He   therefore
submits that the issue has reached a finality and therefore, it
will   not   be   permissible   for   the   State   to   do   away   with   the
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services of the Assistant Teachers. He further submits that the
applicants/interveners   in   the   present   appeals,   who   have
succeeded before the Tribunal, the High Court, and this Court
have not been reinstated.  
26. For appreciating the rival submissions, it will be necessary
to refer to Rules 5 and 6 of the said Rules, which read thus:
“5. Procedure of application to the Board and
appointment of Staff in aided institutions – 
(1)The   Secretary   of   the   Managing
Committee or the Governing Body, as
the   case   may   be,   of   an   Aided
Educational   Institution   shall,   on   or
before   the   thirty­first   day   of   August
every year apply to the Selection Board
with   copy   of   each   application   to   the
concerned   Inspector   of   Schools   in
respect of Schools [Director of Higher
Education]   in   respect   of   Colleges   in
such   manner   as   the   Selection   Board
may   prescribe   for   selection   of   a
candidate   for   appointment   in   the
vacancy or vacancies in teaching post,
and the concerned Inspector of Schools
and [Director of Higher Education] shall
process   the   applications   so   received
and transmit the same to the Selection
Board   by   thirtieth   day   of   September
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every   year   with   certificate   of
genuineness   of   the   vacancy   or
vacancies along with a statement of the
vacancy   position   in   the   Educational
Institutions within his jurisdiction.
(2)The Selection Board shall, on receipt of
applications and certificates referred to
in   Sub­rule   ()   recommend   a   list   of
candidates   in   order   of   merit   strictly
according to the number of vacancies,
to   the   concerned   Directors   who   shall
thereupon,   allot   candidates   to   the
concerned institutions strictly in order
of merit as per vacancy.
(3)Appointment   shall   be   made   by   the
Managing Committee or the Governing
Body   as   the   case   may   be,   of   the
candidates allotted under Sub­rule (2).
(4)[***]
(5)In the extent of non­acceptance of offer
of   appointment   by   any   candidate,
report to that effect shall be sent to the
[Director concerned] by the Secretary of
the   Managing   Committee   or   the
Governing Body, as the case may be,
and   upon   receipt   of   such   intimation,
the   name   of   the   candidate   shall   be
struck   off   the   list.   The   consequential
vacancies   shall   then   be   filled   up   by
candidates   allotted   by   the   Director
concerned   from   an   additional   list
obtained from the Selection Board from
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the list of persons in the waiting list
with it.
(6)If   instance   of   default   in   the
appointment of candidates allotted by
the   Director,   come   to   his   notice,   he
shall   be   competent   to   withhold   the
individual teacher’s cost of the grant­inaid   to   be   paid   to   the   institution
concerned   and   to   take   steps   to
supersede the Managing Committee or
the Governing Body, as the case may
be, under Section 11 of the Act.
(7)Where a vacancy was not foreseen by
thirty­first day of August the Secretary
of   the   Managing   Committee   or   the
Government Body, as the case may be,
shall   apply   to   the   Selection   Board
through the concerned Inspector or the
Director,   as   the   case   may   be,   for
allotment of candidates whereupon, the
Selection   Board   shall   recommend
candidates   out   of   the   waiting   list
maintained   by   it,   through   the
concerned Director.
(8)It shall not be necessary to apply to the
Selection   Board   for   appointments   to
vacancies [for a period of six months or
till the date of receipt of the list referred
to   in   Sub­rule   (2)   from   the   Selection
Board whichever is earlier] and all such
appointments   may   be   made   by   the
Managing   Committee   or   the
Government Body, as the case may be,
21
with the prior approval of the Inspector
in respect of an Institution other than a
College and of the Director in respect of
a College.
[Provided that where it appears to the
Inspector or the Director, as the case
may   be,   that   the   appointment   to   a
vacancy   or   vacancies   in   accordance
with the provisions of this rule is being
circumvented by making appointments
in   pursuance   to   this   Sub­rule,   the
Director suo motu or on the receipt of a
report from the Inspector as the case
may be, shall be competent to proceed
against the Managing Committee or the
Governing Body under Section 11 of the
Act.]
(9)Notwithstanding anything contained in
Sub­rule (8), it shall be competent for
the   Managing   Committee   or   the
Governing Bode, as the case may be to
extend in terms of appointment beyond
six months till the recommendation of
the Selection Board is received with the
prior approval of Government.
6. Procedure of selection of candidates –
(1)   The   Selection   Board   shall,   at   such
intervals   as   it   deems   proper   call   for
applications for various posts in respect
of which vacancies are likely to arise in
the course of the next one year in such
manner as may be determined in the
regulation of the Selection Board.
22
(2)   The   Selection   Board   shall   conduct
examinations   including   a   viva   voce
examination   of   any   candidate   or   all
candidates   with   a   view   to   determine
their merit and suitability in the matter
appointed in its regulations.”
27. Perusal of the sub­rule (1) of Rule 5 of the said Rules
would show that the Secretary of the Managing Committee or
the   Governing   Body,   as   the   case   may   be,   of   an   Aided
Educational Institution, is required to apply to the Selection
Board on or before the thirty­first day of August every year with
copy of each application to the concerned Inspector of Schools
and Director of Higher Education.   The Inspector of Schools
and the Director of Higher Education are required to process
the   applications   so   received   and   transmit   the   same   to   the
Selection Board by thirtieth day of September every year with
certificate of genuineness of the vacancy/vacancies.  Perusal of
sub­rule (2) of Rule 5 of the said Rules would show that the
Selection Board shall recommend a list of candidates in order of
merit   strictly   according   to   the   number   of   vacancies   to   the
23
concerned Directors, who shall thereupon allot candidates to
the   concerned   institutions   strictly   in   order   of   merit   as   per
vacancy. 
28. Perusal of sub­rule (6) of Rule 5 of the said Rules would
reveal that if the Management defaults in making appointment
of candidates allotted by the Director, he shall be competent to
withhold the individual teacher’s cost of the grant­in­aid to be
paid to the institution concerned.   He is also entitled to take
steps to supersede the Managing Committee or the Governing
Body, as the case may be.  Under sub­rule (8) of Rule 5 of the
said Rules, the relaxation is granted for filling up the vacancies
for a period of six months or till the date of receipt of the list as
referred to in sub­rule (2) of Rule 5 of the said Rules.  However,
the same has to be with the prior approval of the Inspector in
respect   of   an   institution   other   than   a   College   and   of   the
Director in respect of a College.
24
29. Rule   6   of   the   said   Rules   prescribes   the   procedure   for
selection of candidates.  
30. It   could   thus   be   clearly   seen   that   a   detailed   selection
procedure is prescribed for making appointment of vacancies
arising in Aided Educational Institution.  
31. Perusal of the approval order dated 12th September, 1980
of   the   Government   of   Orissa,   Education   and   Youth   Service
Department, would reveal that for each M.E. School, only two
posts, i.e., one post of a Trained Graduate Headmaster and one
post of a Trained Matric Teacher, have been sanctioned.  The
order clearly provides that no other post of teaching and nonteaching staff would be permitted.  
32. It   is   not   in   dispute   that   the   appointment   of   all   the
applicants/respondents/teachers have been made directly by
the respective Management without following the procedure as
prescribed under the Rules/Statute. It is a trite law that the
appointments made in contravention of the statutory provisions
25
are void ab initio.  Reference in this respect could be made to
the   judgments   of   this   Court   in   the   cases   of  Ayurvidya
Prasarak  Mandal  and  another  vs.  Geeta  Bhaskar  Pendse
(Mrs)  and  others1
,  J  &  K  Public  Service  Commission  and
others   vs.   Dr.   Narinder   Mohan   and   others2
,  Official
Liquidator vs. Dayanand and others3
, and Union of India
and another vs. Raghuwar Pal Singh4
.  
33. We are unable to accept the contention raised by Shri
Gaurav Agrawal and Shri R. Balasubramanian that since the
applicants/teachers were appointed on posts which were not on
grant­in­aid basis, the said Rules are not applicable.  The said
Rules would clearly show that they are applicable to Aided
Educational   Institution.     Undisputedly,   the   institutions   in
which the applicants/teachers were appointed, were recognized
as Aided M.E. Schools vide G.O. dated 12th September, 1980.  It
1 (1991) 3 SCC 246
2 (1994) 2 SCC 630
3 (2008) 10 SCC 1
4 (2018) 15 SCC 463
26
is also not in dispute that the appointments so made were
subsequent to the schools being recognized as Aided Schools.
As such, the contention in that regard deserves to be rejected. 
34. We further find that the Tribunal, while delivering the
judgment and order dated 18th  May, 2017 and 30th  January,
2018, has failed to take into consideration the earlier orders
dated 25th June, 2013 and 23rd September, 2013 delivered by
the same Tribunal.   In the said orders of 2013, the Tribunal
had elaborately considered the provisions of the said Rules and
found   no   merit   in   the   contentions   raised   on   behalf   of   the
applicants therein. The orders passed by the Tribunal ignoring
its earlier orders, which were passed elaborately considering
the scheme of the said Rules, are totally contrary to the wellestablished norms of judicial propriety.  The situation becomes
graver, inasmuch as, the Tribunal has allowed O.A. No.2270 OF
2015 by its order dated 18th May, 2017 filed by Sri Antaryami
Bal, whose earlier application being O.A. No. 4029(2) of 1996
27
with regard to the same relief was rejected by the Tribunal vide
its earlier order dated 12th  April, 2012. The orders passed by
the Tribunal are, therefore, totally unsustainable in view of the
law laid down by this Court in the case of Official Liquidator
vs. Dayanand and others (supra).   Not only this, the Tribunal
as well as the High Court has failed to take into consideration
the order passed by this Court on 2nd December, 1996 in Civil
Appeal No. 15712 of 19965
.
35. The impugned order passed by the High Court depicts
total non­application of mind.   Whereas the cause title would
itself   show   that   a   Writ   Petition   (Civil)   No.6557   of   2018   is
disposed   of   by   the   impugned   judgment,   the   High   Court
observed that the order dated 18th  May, 2017, passed by the
Tribunal in O.A. No.2266 of 2015, has not been challenged by
the State.  Whereas the teachers have hardly worked for four
years   and  a  substantial   part   thereof  on   account   of   interim
orders passed by the High Court, the High Court goes on to
5 (1997) 2 SCC 635
28
observe that the teachers have worked for a period of more than
20 years.  No reasons, leave aside sound reasons, are reflected
in the impugned order while dismissing the writ petitions filed
by the State.   
36. That   leaves   us   with   the   submission   of   Shri   R.
Balasubramanian, learned Senior Counsel that since the view
taken by the Tribunal has been affirmed by the High Court and
the   Special   Leave   Petition   challenging   the   same   has   been
dismissed, the view of the Tribunal has become final.  In this
respect, reliance could be placed on the judgment of this Court
in the case of Kunhayammed and others vs. State of Kerala
and another6
, wherein this Court has held as under:
“27. A   petition   for   leave   to   appeal   to   this
Court may be dismissed by a non­speaking
order or by a speaking order. Whatever be
the phraseology employed in the order of
dismissal,   if   it   is  a  non­speaking  order,
i.e.,   it   does   not   assign   reasons   for
dismissing   the   special   leave  petition,   it
would   neither   attract   the   doctrine   of
6 (2000) 6 SCC 359
29
merger   so   as   to   stand   substituted   in
place  of  the  order  put  in  issue before it
nor  would   it  be  a  declaration  of   law  by
the  Supreme  Court  under  Article  141  of
the   Constitution   for   there   is   no   law
which   has   been  declared. If the order of
dismissal be supported by reasons then also
the doctrine of merger would not be attracted
because the jurisdiction exercised was not
an   appellate   jurisdiction   but   merely   a
discretionary   jurisdiction   refusing   to   grant
leave to appeal. We have already dealt with
this aspect earlier. Still the reasons stated by
the   Court   would   attract   applicability   of
Article 141 of the Constitution if there is a
law declared by the Supreme Court which
obviously would be binding on all the courts
and   tribunals   in   India   and   certainly   the
parties thereto. The statement contained in
the order other than on points of law would
be binding on the parties and the court or
tribunal, whose order was under challenge
on the principle of  judicial discipline, this
Court being the Apex Court of the country.
No court or tribunal or parties would have
the liberty of taking or canvassing any view
contrary to the one expressed by this Court.
The   order   of   Supreme   Court   would   mean
that it has declared the law and in that light
the case was considered not fit for grant of
leave. The declaration of law will be governed
by Article 141 but still, the case not being
30
one where leave was granted, the doctrine of
merger does not apply. The Court sometimes
leaves   the   question   of   law   open.   Or   it
sometimes   briefly   lays   down   the   principle,
may be, contrary to the one laid down by the
High   Court   and   yet   would   dismiss   the
special leave petition. The reasons given are
intended for purposes of Article 141. This is
so   done   because   in   the   event   of   merely
dismissing   the   special   leave   petition,   it   is
likely that an argument could be advanced
in the High Court that the Supreme Court
has to be understood as not to have differed
in law with the High Court.”
[emphasis supplied]
37. It is thus clear that a mere dismissal of the Special Leave
Petition would not mean that the view of the High Court has
been approved by this Court.  As such, the contention in that
regard is rejected. 
38. We are, therefore, of the considered view that the Tribunal
has   erred   in   allowing   the   Original   Applications   of   the
applicants/teachers.  Similarly, the High Court has also erred
in dismissing the petitions filed by the appellants. 
31
39. In the result, the appeals are allowed.   The impugned
judgment and order of the Division Bench of the High Court
dated 20th December, 2018 passed in a batch of writ petitions
and the judgments and orders dated 18th May, 2017 and 30th
January, 2018 of the Tribunal passed in a batch of Original
Applications   are   quashed   and   set   aside.     The   Original
Applications   filed   by   the   respondents/applicants   before   the
Tribunal are dismissed.  
40. All   pending   applications,   including   applications   for
intervention, shall stand disposed of.   There shall be no order
as to costs. 
…..….......................J.
[L. NAGESWARA RAO]
         …….........................J.
[B.R. GAVAI]
NEW DELHI;
APRIL 20, 2022
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