INDEPENDENT SCHOOLS’ FEDERATION OF INDIA (REGD.) VERSUS UNION OF INDIA AND ANOTHER Case Judgment

INDEPENDENT SCHOOLS’ FEDERATION OF INDIA (REGD.) VERSUS UNION OF INDIA AND ANOTHER

Landmark Cases of India / सुप्रीम कोर्ट के ऐतिहासिक फैसले



Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 1 of 35
REPORTABLE
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 8162 OF 2012
INDEPENDENT SCHOOLS’ FEDERATION
OF INDIA (REGD.) ... APPELLANT
VERSUS
UNION OF INDIA AND ANOTHER ... RESPONDENTS
W I T H
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 8684 OF 2012
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 2229 OF 2013
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 9406 OF 2013
CIVIL APPEAL NOS. 6316-6329 OF 2017
CIVIL APPEAL NOS. 6330-6331 OF 2017
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 3870 OF 2018
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 7457 OF 2018
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 7458 OF 2018
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 7459 OF 2018
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 7460 OF 2018
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 7461 OF 2018
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 7462 OF 2018
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 2 of 35
CIVIL APPEAL NO. OF 2022
(ARISING OUT OF SPECIAL LEAVE PETITION (CIVIL) NO. 12535 OF 2014)
CIVIL APPEAL NO. OF 2022
(ARISING OUT OF SPECIAL LEAVE PETITION (CIVIL) NO. 15069 OF 2015)
CIVIL APPEAL NO. OF 2022
(ARISING OUT OF SPECIAL LEAVE PETITION (CIVIL) NO. 19930 OF 2017)
CIVIL APPEAL NO. OF 2022
(ARISING OUT OF SPECIAL LEAVE PETITION (CIVIL) NO. 3293 OF 2019)
CIVIL APPEAL NO. OF 2022
(ARISING OUT OF SPECIAL LEAVE PETITION (CIVIL) NO. 2235 OF 2020)
WRIT PETITION (CIVIL) NO. 44 OF 2016
WRIT PETITION (CIVIL) NO. 1158 OF 2019
A N D
TRANSFER CASE (CIVIL) NO. 104 OF 2015
J U D G M E N T
SANJIV KHANNA, J.
Leave granted in the special leave petitions.
2. The civil appeals by way of special leave, which impugn the
judgements of the High Court of Allahabad- Lucknow Bench1
, the
1 City Montessori School and Another v. Union of India and Others., Miscellaneous Bench No.
3075/2015; and City Montessari School v. Appellate Authority, Misc. Single No. 4583/2017.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 3 of 35
High Court of Gujarat2
, the High Court of Delhi3
, the High Court of
Bombay- Aurangabad Bench4
, the High Court of Punjab and
Haryana5
, the High Court of Chhattisgarh- Bilaspur Bench6 and the
High Court of Madhya Pradesh,-Indore Bench7
, as well as a batch
of writ petitions under Article 32 of the Constitution of India, were
heard together as they involve a common question – constitutional
validity of the amendment to Section 2(e) and insertion of Section
13A to the Payment of Gratuity Act, 19728
, with retrospective effect
from 3rd April 1997 vide the Payment of Gratuity (Amendment) Act,
20099
.
3. The PAG Act enacted and enforced with effect from 16th September
1972, requires payment of gratuity to an employee after he has
rendered continuous service for not less than 5 years, on his
2 Saraswati Vidya Mandal v. Ashaben Vinubhai Majmudar and Another, S.C.A. No. 17839/ 2011 and
11 other cases; Jain Citizens Education Society, Surendranagar and Another v. Union of India and
Others, S.C.A. No. 9022/2011 and 1 other Case; and Nalanda Kelavani Mandal v. Shri Amrutbhai
Nathudas Patel and Another, S.C.A. No. 18772/2015, and 5 other cases.
3
Independent Schools’ Federation of India (Regd.) v. Union of India & Anr., W.P. (C) No. 6168/2010;
and Maharishi Shiksha Sansthan Registered Society v. Union of India and Another., W.P(C)
4696/2012.
4 Saint Xaviers High School v. Shailaja Vishnu Deshpande., Writ Petition No. 15344/2017; and Saint
Xaviers High School v. Jayashree Shamal Ghosh, Writ Petition No. 15282/2019.
5 The Sonipat Hindu Educational & Charitable Society v. Union of India and Another, C.W.P. No.
17643/2010 (O&M); Maharishi Dayanand Education Society and others v. Union of India and Others,
C.W.P. 16884/2012; and Independent Schools Association, Chandigarh v. Union of India and Others,
C.W.P. No. 23489/2011.
6 The Secretary, Board of Secondary Education and Others v. Union of India and Others, W.P.L. No.
138/2012 and 1 other case.
7 Bal Niketan Sangh through Smt. Meena Phadke v. State of Madhya Pradesh & Others., Writ Petition
No. 5508/ 2014.
8 For short, “PAG Act”.
9 For short, “Amendment Act, 2009”.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 4 of 35
superannuation, retirement or resignation or on his death or
disablement due to accident or disease.10 However, sub-section (3)
to Section 1 of the PAG Act restricts its applicability to the following
establishments :
“1. Short title, extent, application and
commencement. –
xx xx xx
(3) It shall apply to –
(a) every factory, mine, oilfield, plantation, port and
railway company;
(b) every shop or establishment within the meaning of
any law for the time being in force in relation to shops
and establishments in a State, in which ten or more
persons are employed, or were employed, on any day
of the preceding twelve months;
(c) such other establishments or class of
establishments, in which ten or more employees are
employed, or were employed, on any day of the
preceding twelve months, as the Central Government
may, by notification, specify in this behalf.”
In the present case, we are only concerned with clause (c)
and not clauses (a) and (b) to sub-section (3) to Section 1 of the
PAG Act. As per clause (c), the PAG Act applies to an
establishment or a class of establishments in which ten or more
employees are employed, as the Central Government may, by
notification, specify on this behalf.11
10 Section 4 of the PAG Act.
11 Sub-section 3A to Section 1, inserted by the Payment of Gratuity (Second Amendment) Act, 1984
with effect from 18th May 1984, states that a shop or establishment to which the PAG Act applies, shall
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 5 of 35
4. In exercise of powers conferred by clause (c) to Section 1(3) of PAG
Act vide notification No. S.O. 239, the provisions of the PAG Act
were made applicable to the “local bodies” in which ten or more
persons are employed, as a class of establishments, with effect
from 8th January 1982. As a result, the schools under the local
bodies with ten or more employees became liable to pay gratuity to
their employees. However, the notification did not apply to private
schools.
5. By Notification No. S-42013/1/95-SS.(II) issued by the Ministry of
Labour and Employment, Government of India on 3rd April, 1997,
the provisions of the PAG Act have been made applicable to the
educational institutions with ten or more employees. The private
schools being educational institutions, in which ten or more persons
are employed, became liable to pay gratuity to their employees as
per the provisions of the PAG Act.
6. However, some private schools raised a dispute claiming that the
teachers in educational institutions or schools are not “employee”
as defined in Section 2(e) of the PAG Act. The expression
continue to be governed by the enactment, notwithstanding the number of persons employed therein,
at any time after the PAG Act has become applicable, falls below ten.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 6 of 35
“employee” in clause (e) to Section 2, post the Payment of Gratuity
(Amendment) Act, 1994, which came into effect from 24th May
1994, at that time, read thus:
“2. Definitions. –
xx xx xx
(e) employee means any person (other than
apprentice) employed on wages, in any establishment,
factory, mine, oilfield, plantation, port, railway company
or shop, to do any skilled, semi-skilled, or unskilled,
manual, supervisory, technical or clerical work, whether
the terms of such employment are express or implied,
and whether or nor such person is employed in a
managerial or administrative capacity, but does not
include any such person who holds a post under the
Central Government or a State Government and is
governed by any other Act or by any rules providing for
payment of gratuity.”
The contention that the teachers did not fulfil the description
of the employees, who are skilled, semi-skilled or unskilled persons
employed on wages, was accepted by the Full Bench of the High
Court of Gujarat vide judgment dated 4th May 200112. Thus, the
teachers were denied the benefit of gratuity, but other employees
of the private schools, were entitled to the benefit of gratuity.
7. This decision of the High Court of Gujarat was impugned by an
association of teachers – Ahmedabad Private Primary Teachers’
Association, before this Court, but their challenge was rejected vide
12 Shantiben L. Christian v. Administrative Officer, Ahmedabad Municipal School Board, Special Civil
Application No. 5272 of 1987.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 7 of 35
judgment dated 13th January 200413. Applying the doctrine of pari
materia, this Court held that the expression “employee”, as defined
vide clause (e) to Section 2, is restrictive and not expansive. Relying
on decisions in A. Sundarambal v. Government of Goa, Daman
and Diu and Others14 and Haryana Unrecognised Schools’
Association v. State of Haryana15, while interpreting the definition
of an “employee” under the Minimum Wages Act, 1948, and the
Payment of Bonus Act, 1965, as also the definition of “workmen”
under the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947, this Court pointed to the
difference in the definition of word “employee” in the Employees’
Provident Fund and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1952.
Accordingly, teachers who impart education to students were held
not to be an “employee” under Section 2(e) of the PAG Act as they
do not perform any kind of skilled, unskilled, semi-skilled, manual,
supervisory, managerial, administrative, technical or clerical work.
Reasoning in Ahmedabad Private Primary Teachers’
Association (supra) is crystalized in paragraph 25 of the judgment,
which reads:
“25. The legislature was alive to various kinds of
definitions of the word “employee” contained in various
previous labour enactments when the Act was passed
in 1972. If it intended to cover in the definition of
13 Ahmedabad Private Primary Teachers’ Association v. Administrative Officer and Others, (2004) 1
SCC 755.
14 (1988) 4 SCC 42.
15 (1996) 4 SCC 225.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 8 of 35
“employee” all kinds of employees, it could have as well
used such wide language as is contained in Section 2(f)
of the Employees' Provident Funds Act, 1952 which
defines “employee” to mean “any person who is
employed for wages in any kind of work, manual or
otherwise, in or in connection with the work of an
establishment …”. Non-use of such wide language in
the definition of “employee” in Section 2(e) of the Act of
1972 reinforces our conclusion that teachers are clearly
not covered in the definition.”
Nevertheless, being conscious that the teachers would be
thereby deprived of the benefit of gratuity, the Court had observed
and clarified:
“26. Our conclusion should not be misunderstood that
teachers although engaged in a very noble profession
of educating our young generation should not be given
any gratuity benefit. There are already in several States
separate statutes, rules and regulations granting
gratuity benefits to teachers in educational institutions
which are more or less beneficial than the gratuity
benefits provided under the Act. It is for the legislature
to take cognizance of situation of such teachers in
various establishments where gratuity benefits are not
available and think of a separate legislation for them in
this regard. That is the subject-matter solely of the
legislature to consider and decide.”
8. On 26th November 2007, the Payment of Gratuity (Amendment) Bill,
2007, was introduced in the Parliament seeking to amend the
definition of the word “employee” and thereby rectify the error or
lacuna identified by this Court in Ahmedabad Private Primary
Teachers’ Association (supra). The object and reasons, as stated
and obvious, were to extend the benefit of gratuity to teachers of
private educational institutions. The bill was referred to the
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 9 of 35
Standing Committee on 10th December 2007. After due
deliberations and in-depth consideration, the Standing Committee
deemed it appropriate to suggest changes vide the 26th Standing
Committee Report. The report, on the aspect of grant of gratuity to
teachers with effect from 3rd April, 1997 states:
“36…The Committee feel that implementing the law
from the year 2004 will cause irreparable loss to a large
number of teachers of the country, particularly to those
who have already retired. The Committee, therefore,
call upon the Government to make the law applicable
with retrospective effect, i.e. from the date of notification
in the year 1997. This will provide the needed succour
as well as justice to all those affected persons who were
denied their rightful benefits due to some technical
flaw/legal lacuna in the definition of the term ‘employee’
as contained in Section 2 (e) of the Payment of Gratuity
Act, 1972.”
9. Accepting the said recommendation of the 26th Standing Committee
Report, the Payment of Gratuity (Amendment) Bill, 2009 was
introduced in the Parliament on 24th February 2009 and was passed
on 31st December 2009. Clause (e) to Section 2 of the PAG Act was
amended with retrospective effect from 3rd April, 1997, and reads:
“2. Definitions. –
xx xx xx
(e) "employee" means any person (other than an
apprentice) who is employed for wages, whether the
terms of such employment are express or implied, in
any kind of work, manual or otherwise, in or in
connection with the work of a factory, mine, oilfield,
plantation, port, railway company, shop or other
establishment to which this Act applies, but does not
include any such person who holds a post under the
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 10 of 35
Central Government or a State Government and is
governed by any other Act or by any rules providing for
payment of gratuity;”
Further, Section 13A was inserted also with effect from 3rd
April 1997 and reads :
“13A. Validation of payment of gratuity.–
Notwithstanding anything contained in any judgement,
decree or order of any court, for the period commencing
on and from the 3rd day of April, 1997 and ending on
the day on which the Payment of Gratuity (Amendment)
Act, 2009, receives the assent of the President, the
gratuity shall be payable to an employee in pursuance
of the notification of the Government of India in the
Ministry of Labour and Employment vide number S.O.
1080, dated the 3rd day of April, 1997 and the said
notification shall be valid and shall be deemed always
to have been valid as if the Payment of Gratuity
(Amendment) Act, 2009 had been in force at all material
times and the gratuity shall be payable accordingly:
Provided that nothing contained in this section shall
extend, or be construed to extend, to affect any person
with any punishment or penalty whatsoever by reason
of the non-payment by him of the gratuity during the
period specified in this section which shall become due
in pursuance of the said notification.”
10. The object and reasons for the Amendment Act, 2009 refers to the
judgment in Ahmedabad Private Primary Teachers’ Association
(supra), and states that the legislature, to cover the definition of
“employee” to all kinds of employees, has used language similar to
the wide language of clause (f) of Section 2 of the Employees’
Provident Funds and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1952. It is also
crystal clear that the Parliament has passed and enacted the
Amendment Act, 2009 to confer, with retrospective effect from the
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 11 of 35
date of the notification on 3rd April 1997, benefit of gratuity to the
teachers who have rendered continuous service for not less than 5
years, on their superannuation, retirement or resignation, or on their
death or disablement due to accident or disease.
11. Several private schools challenged the constitutional validity of the
amendments, which writ petitions have been dismissed by seven
High Courts, as mentioned in the first paragraph of this judgment.
These appeals by way of special leave impugn these judgments.
Some private schools have also filed writ petitions under Article 32
of the Constitution of India before us.
12. The power of the Parliament and State Legislatures under Articles
245, 246 and 248 of the Constitution of India, as held by this Court
in State of Tamil Nadu v. Arooran Sugar Ltd.16 and several other
decisions of this Court, including State of Gujarat and Another v.
Raman Lal Keshav Lal Soni and Others17
, T.R. Kapur and
Others v. State of Haryana and Others18 and Union of India and
Others v. Tushar Ranjan Mohanty and Others19
, to legislate,
embraces the power to amend, delete or obliterate the statute or
enact a statute prospectively or retrospectively. To be fair, the
16 (1997) 1 SCC 326.
17 (1983) 2 SCC 33.
18 (1986) Supp SCC 584.
19 (1994) 5 SCC 450.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 12 of 35
appellants and the writ petitioners do not contest the competency,
and that the legislature has the power to amend an already enacted
law or enact a new law with retrospective effect. They also do not
dispute that the amendment to Section 2(e), and the insertion of
Section 13A have been given retrospective effect. The two main
grounds of challenge raised and required to be considered in
nutshell can be summarised as:
(a) The legislation vide the Amendment Act 2009
overrules the judicial decision in Ahmedabad
Private Primary Teachers’ Association (supra)
and violates the doctrine of separation of powers.
(b) The retrospective amendments are
unreasonable, excessive and harsh, and therefore,
unconstitutional.
13. The first ground should not hold us for long, as the legislation in
question rectifies the infirmities and defects pointed out by the
Court, and the amended clause (e) to Section 2, defining the word
“employee” and the newly inserted Section 13A with retrospective
effect from 3rd April 1997, effectuate and catalyse the object and
purpose of the Notification No. S-42013/1/95-SS.(II). This power to
legislate with retrospective effect, which vests in every sovereign
legislature, is not taken away by a court decision. However, a court
decision cannot be overruled by the legislature. The legislature can
amend the language of the provision that was the subject matter of
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 13 of 35
the court decision, and such an amendment does not overrule the
court decision. Overruling assumes a decision based on the same
law. Where the law, as in the present case, has been amended,
and the defects have been removed or cured, the law changes, and
therefore, the earlier interpretation is no longer applicable and
becomes irrelevant. Doctrine of separation of powers demarcates
the exclusive domains of the legislature, which enacts the laws, and
the courts’, which interpret the law as enacted. The earlier decision
in Ahmedabad Private Primary Teachers’ Association (supra)
by this Court had interpreted the law, that is, Section 2(e) of the
PAG Act, as it then existed in the statute. The judgment even
acknowledged and prompted the legislature to enact a legislation
granting the benefit of gratuity to teachers, who had been excluded
because of the legal flaw. When the legislature acts within its power
to usher in a valid law and rectify a legal error, even after a court
ruling, the legislature exercises its constitutional power to enact the
law and does not overrule an earlier court decision. This principle
is too well settled to require elaborate quotations, albeit reference
can be made amongst other cases to Shri Prithvi Cotton Mills
Ltd. and Another v. Broach Borough Municipality and Others20
,
20 (1969) 2 SCC 283
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 14 of 35
Ujagar Prints and Others (II) v. Union of India and Others21 and
National Agricultural Cooperative Marking Federation of India
Ltd. and Another v. Union of India and Others22
.
14. The second ground is again devoid of any merit and substance.
The legislature, vide the Amendment Act, 2009, has given
retrospective effect to the amended provision of Section 2(e) and
the newly inserted Section 13A with effect from 3rd April 1997, which
is also the date of the notification issued by the Government under
Section 1(3)(c), making the PAG Act applicable to the educational
institutions with ten or more employees. The amendment enforces
and gives effect to what was intended by the notification, but could
not be achieved on account of the technical and legal defect. The
lacuna, a distortion in the language that had the unwitting effect of
leaving out teachers, has been rectified so as to achieve the object
and purpose behind the issuance of the notification, making the
PAG Act applicable to all educational institutions. The argument of
the educational institutions that they have been taken by surprise is
incorrect and unacceptable as the legislation had cured the
inadvertent defect in a statute, as pointed out by this Court, through
legislative repair. Private schools, when they claim a vested right
21 (1989) 3 SCC 488.
22 (2003) 5 SCC 23.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 15 of 35
arising from the reason of defect, should not succeed, for
acceptance would be at the expense of teachers who were denied
and deprived of the intended benefit. Marginal inconvenience in the
form of financial outgo or difficulty is of little weight, when curing of
an inadvertent defect is made retrospectively in greater public
interest, which consideration will overrule the interest of one or
some institutions.
23 We find little merit in this argument also for the
reason, that the observations of this Court in Ahmedabad Private
Primary Teachers’ Association (supra) in paragraph 26 were
sufficient to indicate that a legislation should intervene to grant the
benefit of gratuity to teachers. The contention that the private
schools were sure to succeed as to deny the teachers the benefit
of the Notification No. S-42013/1/95-SS.(II) dated 3rd April 1997, is
questionable and farfetched to be accepted. The challenge was
contested and had remained pending before the High Courts and
then this Court. The private schools had relied on some judgments
of this Court, but these judgments have interpreted the word
“employee” under other enactments. The law is subject to
uncertainty ex-ante when two or more views are possible, but there
may be certainty ex-post litigation in view of the law of precedents,
which reduces uncertainty.
23 See paragraph 69 in Ujagar Prints and Others (II) v. Union of India and Others, (1989) 3 SCC 488.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 16 of 35
15. A secondary argument on behalf of the private educational
institutions that they would be liable to pay gratuity for a period of
service prior to 3rd April 1997, and, therefore, the amendments are
unconscionable and tyrannous, is equally fallacious for several
reasons. A somewhat similar controversy had arisen in the case of
Management of Goodyear India Limited. v. Shri K.G.
Devessar24, wherein the employee was in service from 24th
January 1961 to 31st December 1974. On 16th September 1972, the
date when the PAG Act came into effect, he was drawing a salary
of more than Rs. 1,000/- per month and hence, in terms of the then
definition of the word “employee” under the PAG Act, which
excluded those drawing salary of more than Rs. 1,000/- per month,
as per the employer- management, the employee was not entitled
to gratuity. Rejecting the contention, this Court held that the gratuity
is payable to an employee as per the mandate of Section 425 of the
24 (1985) 4 SCC 45.
25 4. Payment of gratuity.––(1) Gratuity shall be payable to an employee on the termination of his
employment after he has rendered continuous service for not less than five years,––
(a) on his superannuation, or
(b) on his retirement or resignation, or
(c) on his death or disablement due to accident or disease:
Provided that the completion of continuous service of five years shall not be necessary where
the termination of the employment of any employee is due to death or disablement:
Provided further that in the case of death of the employee, gratuity payable to him shall be
paid to his nominee or, if no nomination has been made, to his heirs, and where any such nominees
or heirs is a minor, the share of such minor, shall be deposited with the controlling authority who shall
invest the same for the benefit of such minor in such bank or other financial institution, as may be
prescribed, until such minor attains majority.
Explanation.–– For the purposes of this section, disablement means such disablement as
incapacitates an employee for the work which he was capable of performing before the accident or
disease resulting in such disablement.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 17 of 35
PAG Act, after he has rendered continuous service for not less than
5 years on his superannuation, retirement or resignation or on his
death or disablement due to accident or disease, when such event
has occurred post the enforcement of the PAG Act. The Court
rejected the submission on behalf of the employer-management
that an employee is entitled to gratuity only when, both on the date
when the PAG Act came into force, and on the date when the
employee retired, he/she was drawing wages not exceeding
(2) For every completed year of service or part thereof in excess of six months, the employer
shall pay gratuity to an employee at the rate of fifteen days’ wages based on the rate of wages last
drawn by the employee concerned:
Provided that in the case of a piece-rated employee, daily wages shall be computed on the
average of the total wages received by him for a period of three months immediately preceding the
termination of his employment, and, for this purpose, the wages paid for any overtime work shall not
be taken into account:
Provided further that in the case of an employee who is employed in a seasonal establishment
and who is not so employed throughout the year, the employer shall pay the gratuity at the rate of
seven days’ wages for each season.
Explanation.–– In the case of a monthly rated employee, the fifteen days’ wages shall be
calculated by dividing the monthly rate of wages last drawn by him by twenty-six and multiplying the
quotient by fifteen.
(3) The amount of gratuity payable to an employee shall not exceed such amount as may be
notified by the Central Government from time to time.
(4) For the purpose of computing the gratuity payable to an employee who is employed, after
his disablement, on reduced wages, his wages for the period preceding his disablement shall be taken
to be the wages received by him during that period, and his wages for the period subsequent to his
disablement shall be taken to be the wages as so reduced.
(5) Nothing in this section shall affect the right of an employee to receive better terms of gratuity
under any award or agreement or contract with the employer.
(6) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1),––
(a) the gratuity of an employee, whose services have been terminated for any act,
wilful omission or negligence causing any damage or loss to, or destruction of,
property belonging to the employer shall be forfeited to the extent of the damage or
loss so caused;
(b) the gratuity payable to an employee may be wholly or partially forfeited
(i) if the services of such employee have been terminated for his riotous or
disorderly conduct or any other act of violence on his part, or
(ii) if the services of such employee have been terminated for any act which
constitutes an offence involving moral turpitude, provided that such offence is
committed by him in the course of his employment.
(7). *********
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 18 of 35
Rs.1,000/- per month. The Court observed that to approve the
submission of the employer-management would render a whole
class of workers, who were during the course of their employment
drawing salary less than Rs. 1,000/- per month but on the eve of
their retirement were getting wages of Rs. 1,000/- per month,
without the benefit of gratuity. This could not have been the
intention of the Parliament. The reasonable way to construe Section
4 in the light of Section 2(e) of the PAG Act would be to hold that
when the employees’ services are terminated for any reason
mentioned in Section 4 after coming into force of the PAG Act, the
employee would be entitled to the payment of gratuity if he has
rendered continuous service for not less than 5 years and for that
period during which he satisfied the definition of “employee” under
Section 2(e). It does not matter whether that period comes before
the commencement of the PAG Act. Once that condition is satisfied,
the next and only question would be regarding the amount of
gratuity payable.
16. The argument of unreasonableness and that the amendment is
financially confiscatory, predicated on past liability, which may predate the notification effective from 3rd April 1997, apart from the
other reasons, is to be rejected as there are upper-cap limits on
payment of gratuity. Therefore, though gratuity is computed with
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 19 of 35
reference to the years of service, in view of the upper-cap limit, the
payment towards gratuity cannot exceed the specified amount,
even if the employee would be entitled to higher amount in view of
the years of the service rendered to the employer.
17. In the context of applicability of an enactment, the courts have
drawn difference between retroactive effect and retrospective
operation. Shanti Conductors Private Limited and Another v.
Assam State Electricity Board and Others26 refers to earlier case
law and elucidates:
“64. The opinion of Gowda, J. dated 31-8-2016
although holds that the Act is not retrospective but he
holds the Act retroactive. The word “retroactive” has
been defined in Black's Law Dictionary in the following
words:
“Retroactive, adj.(17c) (Of a statute, ruling, etc.)
extending in scope or effect to matters that have
occurred in the past. —Also termed retrospective.
Cf. Prospective (1).–retroact, vb.”
65. The two-Judge Bench of this Court in State Bank's
Staff Union (Madras Circle) v. Union of India, had
occasion to examine the concept of retroactive and
retrospective. In paras 20 and 21 of the judgment the
following has been laid down: (SCC p. 593)
“20. Judicial Dictionary (13th Edn.) by K.J. Aiyar,
Butterworth, p. 857, states that the word
“retrospective” when used with reference to an
enactment may mean (i) affecting an existing
contract; or (ii) reopening up of past, closed and
completed transaction; or (iii) affecting accrued
rights and remedies; or (iv) affecting procedure.
Words and Phrases, Permanent Edn., Vol. 37-A,
26 (2019) 19 SCC 529.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 20 of 35
pp. 224-25, defines a “retrospective or retroactive
law” as one which takes away or impairs vested
or accrued rights acquired under existing laws. A
retroactive law takes away or impairs vested
rights acquired under existing laws, or creates a
new obligation, imposes a new duty, or attaches a
new disability, in respect to transactions or
considerations already past.
21. In Advanced Law Lexicon by P. Ramanatha
Aiyar (3rd Edn., 2005) the expressions
“retroactive” and “retrospective” have been
defined as follows at p. 4124, Vol. 4:
‘Retroactive.—Acting backward; affecting what is
past.
(Of a statute, ruling, etc.) extending in scope or
effect to matters that have occurred in the past. —
Also termed retrospective. (Black's Law
Dictionary, 7th Edn., 1999)
“Retroactivity” is a term often used by lawyers but
rarely defined. On analysis it soon becomes
apparent, moreover, that it is used to cover at
least two distinct concepts. The first, which may
be called “true retroactivity”, consists in the
application of a new rule of law to an act or
transaction which was completed before the rule
was promulgated. The second concept, which will
be referred to as “quasi-retroactivity”, occurs
when a new rule of law is applied to an act or
transaction in the process of completion … The
foundation of these concepts is the distinction
between completed and pending transactions …
[T.C. Hartley, The Foundations of European
Community Law, p. 129 (1981)].
xx xx xx
Retrospective.—Looking back; contemplating
what is past.
Having operation from a past time.
“Retrospective” is somewhat ambiguous and that
good deal of confusion has been caused by the
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 21 of 35
fact that it is used in more senses than one. In
general, however, the courts regard as
retrospective any statute which operates on cases
or facts coming into existence before its
commencement in the sense that it affects, even
if for the future only, the character or
consequences of transactions previously entered
into or of other past conduct. Thus, a statute is not
retrospective merely because it affects existing
rights; nor is it retrospective merely because a
part of the requisite for its action is drawn from a
time antecedent to its passing.’ (Vol. 44,
Halsbury's Laws of England, 4th Edn., p. 570,
para 921.)”
66. Further in Jay Mahakali Rolling Mills v. Union of
India, explaining retroactive and retrospective the
following has been laid down: (SCC p. 200, para 8)
“8. “Retrospective” means looking backward,
contemplating what is past, having reference to a
statute or things existing before the statute in
question. Retrospective law means a law which
looks backward or contemplates the past; one,
which is made to affect acts or facts occurring, or
rights occurring, before it comes into force.
Retroactive statute means a statute, which
creates a new obligation on transactions or
considerations or destroys or impairs vested
rights.”
67. Retroactivity in the context of the statute consists of
application of new rule of law to an act or transaction
which has been completed before the rule was
promulgated.”
18. Vineeta Sharma v. Rakesh Sharma and Others27 observes that
retrospective statute operates backwards and takes away vested
rights accrued under law. The retroactive statute does not operate
retrospectively, but it operates in future, albeit it does not become
27 (2020) 9 SCC 1.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 22 of 35
retrospective in operation when the operation is based on the
character and status that arose earlier. Character or event which
has happened in past or requisites which have been drawn from
antecedent events cannot be necessarily construed as having
retrospective effect. A retrospective statute means a statute which
creates a new obligation on transactions or considerations already
past or destroyed or impaired vested rights on and from the
retrospective date.28 The judgment in Vineeta Sharma (supra)
relies on and quotes from an earlier decision in Darshan Singh v.
Ram Pal Singh and Another,
29
 which portion we would also like
to quote:
“35. Mr Sachar relies on Gokal Chand v. Parvin Kumari,
Garikapati Veeraya v. N. Subbiah Choudhry , Jose Da
Costa v. Bascora Sadasiva Sinai Narcornim , Govind
Das v. CIT , Henshall v. Porter , United Provinces v.
Atiqa Begum, in support of his submission that the
Amendment Act was not made retrospective by the
legislature either expressly or by necessary implication
as the Act itself expressly provided that it shall be
deemed to have come into force on 23-1-1973; and
therefore there would be no justification to giving it
retrospective operation. The vested right to contest
which was created on the alienation having taken place
and which had been litigated in the court, argues Mr
Sachar, could not be taken away. In other words, the
vested right to contest in appeal was not affected by the
Amendment Act. However, to appreciate this argument
we have to analyse and distinguish between the two
rights involved, namely, the right to contest and the right
28 In the present case, the constitutional mandate of Article 20(1) is not required to be examined and
considered.
29 1992 Supp. (1) SCC 191.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 23 of 35
to appeal against the lower court's decision. Of these
two rights, while the right to contest is a customary right,
the right to appeal is always a creature of statute. The
change of the forum for appeal by enactment may not
affect the right of appeal itself. In the instant case we are
concerned with the right to contest and not with the right
to appeal as such. There is also no dispute as to the
propositions of law regarding vested rights being not
taken away by an enactment which is ex facie or by
implication not retrospective. But merely because an Act
envisages a past act or event in the sweep of its
operation, it may not necessarily be said to be
retrospective. Retrospective, according to Black's Law
Dictionary, means looking backward; contemplating
what is past; having reference to a statute or things
existing before the Act in question. Retrospective law,
according to the same dictionary, means a law which
looks backwards or contemplates the past; one which is
made to affect acts or facts occurring, or rights
occurring, before it came into force. Every statute which
takes away or impairs vested rights acquired under
existing laws, or creates a new obligation, imposes a
new duty, or attaches a new disability in respect to
transactions or considerations already past. Retroactive
statute means a statute which creates a new obligation
on transactions or considerations already past or
destroys or impairs vested rights.
36. In Halsbury's Laws of England (4th Edn., Vol. 44, at
para 921) we find:
“921. Meaning of “retrospective”.—It has been
said that “retrospective” is somewhat ambiguous
and that a good deal of confusion has been
caused by the fact that it is used in more senses
than one. In general, however, the courts regard
as retrospective any statute which operates on
cases or facts coming into existence before its
commencement in the sense that it affects, even
if for the future only, the character or
consequences of transactions previously entered
into or of other past conduct. Thus a statute is not
retrospective merely because it affects existing
rights; or is it retrospective merely because a part
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 24 of 35
of the requisites for its action is drawn from a time
antecedent to its passing.’
37. We are inclined to take the view that in the instant
case the legislature looked back to 23-1-1973 and not
beyond to put an end to the custom and merely because
on that cut-off date some contests were brought to
abrupt end would not make the Amendment Act
retrospective. In other words, it would not be
retrospective merely because a part of the requisites for
its action was drawn from a time antecedent to the
Amendment Act coming into force. We are also of the
view that while providing that “no person shall contest
any alienation of immovable property whether ancestral
or non-ancestral or any appointment of an heir to such
property”, without preserving any right to contest such
alienations or appointments as were made after the
coming into force of the Principal Act and before the
coming into force of the Amendment Act, the intention of
the legislature was to cut off even the vested right; and
that it was so by implication as well. There is no dispute
as to the proposition that retrospective effect is not to be
given to an Act unless, the legislature made it so by
express words or necessary implication. But in the
instant case it appears that this was the intention of the
legislature. Similarly courts will construe a provision as
conferring power to act retroactively when clear words
are used. We find both the intention and language of the
Amendment Act clear in these respects.”
19. The provisions of the PAG Act, even post the retrospective
amendments, will apply only to those teachers who were in service
as on 3rd April 1997, and at the time of termination have rendered
service of not less than 5 years. The period of 5 years may be partly
before 3rd April 1997, as the date on which the person was
employed does not determine the applicability of the PAG Act. The
date of termination of service, in the form of superannuation,
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 25 of 35
retirement, or resignation, or death or disablement due to accident
or disease, should be post the enforcement date, which in the
present case is 3rd April 1997. The entire length of service, including
the service period prior to 3rd April 1997, is to be counted for the
purpose of computing the entitlement condition of 5 years of
service. This is the correct effect of the ratio and decision in
Management of Goodyear India Limited. (supra) and the
decisions explaining retroactive effect of a statute. This legal
position would be equally true and correct when the PAG Act was
first enforced with effect from 16th September 1972, and when
Notification No. S-42013/1/95-SS.(II) under Section 1(3)(c) of the
PAG Act was issued and enforced with effect from 3rd April, 1997.
It would be the position in case of all notifications issued under
Section 1(3)(c) of the PAG Act, unless a contrary intention is
expressed, which is not the situation in the present case and thus
need not be examined.
20. The schools have claimed violation of Articles 14, 19(1)(g), 21 and
300-A of the Constitution of India which, in our opinion, are not
violated as, to deny gratuity benefits to the teachers upon
enforcement of the notification No. S-42013/1/95-SS.(II) dated 3rd
April 1997 was itself an anomaly which mandated correction. The
effect of the decision in Ahmedabad Private Primary Teachers’
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 26 of 35
Association (supra) was that although private educational
institutions were covered under the PAG Act, gratuity benefits could
not be extended to teachers in view of the legal flaw in the definition,
consequent to which they were not treated as employees. The
teachers were discriminated to be denied benefit of gratuity, a
terminal benefit, which was payable to other employees of the
private schools/educational institutions, including those engaged in
administrative and managerial work. The amendment with
retrospective effect remedies the injustice and discrimination
suffered by the teachers on account of a legislative mistake, which
was understood after the pronouncement of the judgment in
Ahmedabad Private Primary Teachers’ Association (supra).
The amendment was necessary to ensure that something which
was due and payable to the teachers is not denied to them due to
a defect in the statute. Payment of gratuity cannot be categorized
as a windfall or a bounty payable by the private schools as it is one
of the minimal conditions of service.
30 In this background, the
argument of the private schools that they do not have capacity and
ability to pay gratuity to the teachers is unapt and parsimonious. All
establishments are bound to follow the law, including the PAG Act.
As observed earlier, the private schools were certainly aware of the
30 See Bakshish Singh v. M/s Darshan Engineering Works and Others, (1994) 1 SCC 9.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 27 of 35
intent of the Government that the educational institutions, as an
establishment, would be covered and must pay gratuity upon issue
of notification No. S-42013/1/95-SS.(II) dated 3rd April 1997. Some
schools have raised an argument relying upon decision of this Court
in T.M.A. Pai Foundation and Others v. State of Karnataka and
Others31, which observes that as a matter of principle, charging of
capitation fee or profiteering by educational institutions is
impermissible. However, the judgment does not state that the
teachers should not be paid gratuity. In fact, the judgment holds that
the educational institutions are entitled to reasonable surplus to
meet the cost of expansion and augmentation of the facilities and
this does not amount to profiteering. It is possible that in some
States there are fee fixation laws which will have to be complied
with. But compliance with these laws does not mean that the
teachers should be deprived and denied gratuity, which they were/
are entitled to receive as other employees of an educational
institution. Regulation of fee is to ensure that there is no
commercialisation and profiteering, and the effect is not to prohibit
a school from fixing and collecting “just and permissible school fee”,
as has been held by this Court in Indian School, Jodhpur and
31 (2002) 8 SCC 481.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 28 of 35
Another v. State of Rajasthan and Others.
32
21. Reliance placed on the dissenting opinion of Amarendra Nath Sen,
J. in Lohia Machines Ltd. and Another v. Union of India and
Others33 is misplaced. The majority opinion of the Constitution
Bench Judgment of Five Judges, authored by P.N. Bhagwati, J.,
had upheld the constitutional validity of Rule 19-A of the Income
Tax Rules, 1962, enacted vide Finance Act (No.2 of 1980) with
retrospective effect from 1st April 1972, thereby restricting the
deduction available under Section 80-J of the Income Tax Act,
1961. In paragraph 78, Amarendra Nath Sen, J., in his dissenting
opinion, has observed that a validating act validating any fiscal
provision with retrospective operation is usually held not to be
unreasonable and arbitrary, as they are generally made to clarify
an ambiguity or rectify some flaw or defect. Such validating act
should not be construed as having the effect to impose fresh tax
with retrospective effect. Thereafter, Amarendra Nath Sen, J., in the
context of the amendment, observed that it had the effect of
withdrawal of benefit, unequivocally granted by the main provision,
which reason has not been accepted and did not find favour with
the majority judgment. In the present case, there is no withdrawal
32 (2021) 10 SCC 517.
33 (1985) 2 SCC 197.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 29 of 35
of benefit unequivocally granted.
22. A supplementary submission of the private schools was that the
judgments of this Court upholding retrospective amendments are
valid only when there is a tax implication as the Government has to
refund the paid taxes, is unfounded and irrational. The power to
amend, which includes the power to amend the statute with
retrospective effect, is a constitutional power vested with the
legislature, which is not confined and restricted to any particular
type of statutes, namely, tax statutes. We would not accept any
attempt to circumscribe and limit the power vested with the
sovereign legislature, thereby putting fetters when such fetters are
not prescribed by the Constitution. When and which cases to
exercise the power has to be left to the legislature. In case the
constitutional validity of the amendment act is challenged, the court
is entitled to examine the relevant circumstances which prompted
the legislature to make retrospective amendment. Judicial review,
when validity of an amendment act is challenged, is decided on the
grounds of lack of legislative competence, violation of the
fundamental rights or any other provisions of the Constitution of
India. In the present case, the notification No. S-42013/1/95-SS.(II)
dated 3rd April 1997 had ensured that the benevolent provisions
requiring payment of gratuity should be extended to the
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 30 of 35
“employees” of the educational institutions. The amendment with
retrospective effect is to make the benevolent provisions equally
applicable to teachers. The amendment seeks to bring equality and
give fair treatment to the teachers. It can hardly be categorised as
an arbitrary and high-handed exercise.
23. The last contention raised by the private schools and writ petitioners
is predicated on the enactment of the Repealing and Amending Act
201634
, by virtue of which the Amendment Act 2009 was repealed.
The argument, in our opinion, overlooks Section 6A of the General
Clauses Act, 1897 and Section 4 of the Repealing and Amendment
Act, which read thus:
“Section 6A of The General Clauses Act, 1897
6A. Repeal of Act making textual amendment in Act
or Regulation.–– Where any Central Act or Regulation
made after the commencement of this Act repeals any
enactment by which the text of any Central Act or
Regulation was amended by the express omission,
insertion or substitution of any matter, then, unless a
different intention appears, the repeal shall not affect
the continuance of any such amendment made by the
enactment so repealed and in operation at the time of
such repeal.
xx xx xx
Section 4 of The Repealing and Amendment Act, 2016
4. Savings.–– The repeal by this Act of any enactment
shall not affect any other enactment in which the
repealed enactment has been applied, incorporated or
referred to,
34 For short, “Repealing and Amendment Act”.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 31 of 35
and this Act shall not affect the validity, invalidity,
effect or consequences of anything already done or
suffered, or any right, title, obligation or liability already
acquired, accrued or incurred, or any remedy or
proceeding in respect thereof, or any release or
discharge of or from any debt, penalty, obligation,
liability, claim or demand, or any indemnity already
granted, or the proof of any past act or thing;
nor shall this Act affect any principle or rule of law,
or established jurisdiction, form or course of pleading,
practice or procedure, or existing usage, custom,
privilege, restriction, exemption, office or appointment,
notwithstanding that the same respectively may have
been in any manner affirmed or recognised or derived
by, in or from any enactment hereby repealed;
nor shall the repeal by this Act of any enactment
revive or restore any jurisdiction, office, custom, liability,
right, title, privilege, restriction, exemption, usage,
practice, procedure or other matter or thing not now
existing or in force.”
24. Section 4 of the Repealing and Amendment Act states that the
repeal shall not affect any of the enactment in which the repealed
enactment has been applied, incorporated or referred to. It also
states that the Repealing Act shall not affect the validity, invalidity,
effect or consequences of anything already done or suffered, or any
right, title, obligation or liability already acquired, accrued or
incurred etc. This Court in Jethanand Betab v. State of Delhi35
had examined a similar provision of the Repealing and Amendment
Act, 1952, whereby the Indian Wireless Telegraph (Amendment)
Act, 1949 was repealed in its entirety. Reference was made to the
decision of the Judicial Committee in Secretary of State for India
35 (1960) 1 SCR 755.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 32 of 35
in Council v. Hindusthan Co-operative Insurance Society,
Ltd.36 and the principle that, where the repealing act states that the
enactment thereof shall not affect any act in which the enactment
has been applied, incorporated or referred to, means that there is
an independent existence of the two acts and, therefore, even on
the death of the amending act, its offspring survives in the
incorporating act. This Court also referred to Halsbury’s Law of
England on the said aspect and the decision of the Calcutta High
Court in Khuda Bux v. Manager, Caledonian Press37
. Relevant
extract from the judgment in Jethanand Betab (supra) reads thus:
“6. The general object of a repealing and amending Act
is stated in Halsbury's Laws of England, 2nd Edn., Vol.
31, at p. 563, thus:
“A statute Law Revision Act does not alter the law,
but simply strikes out certain enactments which
have become unnecessary. It invariably contains
elaborate provisos.”
In Khuda Bux v. Manager, Caledonian Press,
Chakravartti, C.J., neatly brings out the purpose and
scope of such Acts. The learned Chief Justice says at p.
486:
“Such Acts have no Legislative effect, but are
designed for editorial revision, being intended only
to excise dead matter from the statute book and
to reduce its volume. Mostly, they expurgate
amending Acts, because having imparted the
amendments to the main Acts, those Acts have
served their purpose and have no further reason
for their existence. At times, inconsistencies are
also removed by repealing and amending Acts.
36 1931 SCC OnLine PC 37.
37 1954 SCC OnLine Cal 132.
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 33 of 35
The only object of such Acts, which in England are
called Statute Law Revision Acts, is legislative
spring-cleaning and they are not intended to make
any change in the law. Even so, they are guarded
by saving clauses drawn with elaborate care,….”
It is, therefore, clear that the main object of the 1952 Act
was only to strike out the unnecessary Acts and excise
dead matter from the statute book in order to lighten the
burden of ever increasing spate of legislation and to
remove confusion from the public mind. The object of
the Repealing and Amending Act of 1952 was only to
expurgate the amending Act of 1949, along with similar
Acts, which had served its purpose.
7. The next question is whether Section 4 of the Act of
1952 saved the operation of the amendments that had
been inserted in the Act of 1933 by the repealed Act.
The relevant part of Section 4 only saved other
enactments in which the repealed enactments have
been applied, incorporated or referred to. Can it be said
that the amendments are covered by the language of the
crucial words in Section 4 of the Act of 1952, namely,
“applied, incorporated or referred to”. We think not.
Section 4 of the said Act is designed to provide for a
different situation, namely, the repeal of an earlier Act
which has been applied, incorporated or referred to in a
later Act. Under that section the repeal of the earlier Act
does not affect the subsequent Act. The said principle
has been succinctly stated in Maxwell on Interpretation
of Statutes, 10th Edn., p. 406:
“Where the provisions of one statute are, by
reference, incorporated in another and the earlier
statute is afterwards repealed the provisions so
incorporated obviously continue in force so far as
they form part of the second enactment.”
So too, in Craies on Statute Law, 3rd Edn., the sama
idea is expressed in the following words, at p. 349:
“Sometimes an Act of Parliament, instead of
expressly repeating the words of a section
contained in a former Act, merely refers to it, and
by relation applies its provisions to some new
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 34 of 35
state of things created by the subsequent Act. In
such a case the rule of construction is that where
a statute is incorporated by reference into a
second statute, the repeal of the first statute by a
third does not affect the second”.
The Judicial Committee in Secretary of State for India in
Council v. Hindusthan Co-operative Insurance Society,
Ltd. endorsed the said principle and restated the same,
at p. 267, thus:
“This doctrine finds expression in a common-form
section which regularly appears in the amending
and repealing Acts which are passed from time to
time in India. The section runs: “The repeal by this
Act of any enactment shall not affect any Act…. in
which such enactment has been applied,
incorporated or referred to”. The independent
existence of the two Acts is therefore recognized;
despite the death of the parent Act, its offspring
survives in the incorporating Act. Though no such
saving clause appears in the General clauses Act,
Their Lordships think that the principle involved is
as applicable in India as it is in this country.”
It is, therefore, manifest that Section 4 of the 1952 Act
has no application to a case of a later amending Act
inserting new provisions in an earlier Act, for, where an
earlier Act is amended by a later Act, it cannot be said
that the earlier Act applies, incorporates or refers to the
amending Act. The earlier Act cannot incorporate the
later Act, but can only be amended by it. We cannot,
therefore, agree with the view expressed by the Punjab
High Court in Mohinder Singh v. Mst. Harbhajan Kaur
and Darbara Singh v. Shrimati Karnail Kaur that Section
4 of the Repealing and Amending Act of 1952 applies to
a case of repeal of an amending Act.
25. In most cases, the prayer for stay, as in Civil Appeal No. 8162 of
2012, was not accepted, albeit in some cases, stay has been
granted for payment of gratuity for the period prior to 3rd April 1997.
As explained above and applying the principle of retroactivity and
Civil Appeal No. 8162 of 2012 and Others Page 35 of 35
as also following the judgment of this Court in Management of
Goodyear India Limited. (supra), this argument raised on behalf
of the private schools should fail and is rejected. The partial stay
order dated 31st January 2020 passed in SLP (C) No. 2235 of 2020,
titled Saint Xaviers High School v. Jayashree Shamal Ghosh, or
in any other case, is vacated.
26. For the reasons mentioned above, the aforesaid appeals, transfer
case and the writ petitions are dismissed. The stay orders, as stated
above, are vacated. The private schools would make payment to
the employees/teachers along with the interest in accordance with
the provisions of the PAG Act within a period of 6 weeks from today
and in case of default, the employees/teachers may move the
appropriate forum to enforce payment in accordance with the
provisions of the PAG Act. In the facts of the case, there will be no
orders as to costs.
......................................J.
( SANJIV KHANNA )
......................................J.
( BELA M. TRIVEDI )
NEW DELHI;
AUGUST 29, 2022.

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