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Tamil Nadu Rural Development Engineers Andassistant Engineers Association Vs. Government of Tamil Nadu [28/11/19]

Section

Tamil Nadu Rural Development Engineers and Assistant Engineers Association Vs. Government of Tamil Nadu and Ors.

[Civil Appeal No.10029 of 2017]

[Civil Appeal No.10030-10189 Of 2017]

[Civil Appeal No.10190 of 2017]

[Civil Appeal No.10191 of 2017]

[Civil Appeal No.10192 of 2017]

Uday Umesh Lalit, J.

1. These
Appeals arise out of the judgment and order dated 27.02.2014 passed by the High
Court of Judicature at Madras in Writ Appeal No.504 of 2012 and all other
connected matters.

2. After the
recommendations were given in March 2008 for revision of pay-scales by the 6th Central Pay
Commission, an Official Committee was constituted by the Government of Tamil
Nadu to examine and make recommendations
about the pay-scales of Government Employees in consonance with the
recommendations made by the 6th Central Pay Commission. This
Official Committee submitted its report on 27.05.2009 making
certain recommendations on “pay-scale to pay-scale” basis i.e. to say that for
the existing scales of pay, the revised pay (pay band) and grade pay were
recommended. The recommendations were accepted by the State Government
by GO No.234 dated 01.06.2009. For the present purposes the relevant part of GO
No.234 may be quoted here:

“(d)
Further, the Government of India has granted two different revised scales of
pay for the existing scale of Rs.8000-13500, one for promotees on the revised
pay scale of Rs.9300-34800 (Pay Band 2) with a Grade Pay of Rs.5,400/- and
the other for direct recruits (Group A entry) on the revised pay scale of
Rs.1560039100 (Pay Band-3) with the same Grade Pay of Rs.5,400/-. The scale of
pay of Section Officers in Central Secretariat has been placed in the Pay
Band-3 i.e. Rs.15600-39100 + Grade Pay of Rs.5400/-.
As the State Government is extending the same pay scale to the Section Officer
/ Private Secretary in Tamil Nadu Secretariat Service on par with their
counterparts in Central Secretariat, the Government direct that the Section
Officer / Private Secretary in
Secretariat / High Court / Tamil Nadu Public Service Commission shall also be
placed in Pay Band3. Further, all middle management posts, such as
Administrative Officer, Accounts Officer, Deputy Collector etc. including
GroupI entry level

posts are
presently granted a uniform scale of pay both for promotees and direct
recruits. Hence, the Government direct that all the posts carrying the present
scale of pay of Rs.8000-13500 shall be placed uniformly in Pay Band3 and given
the revised pay scale of
Rs.15600-39100 with the Grade Pay of Rs.5,400/-. Further, taking note of the
fact that the same Grade Pay is allowed to the employees in Pay Band-2 from
Rs.5000-8000 to Rs.6500-10500 in the Government of India, the Government has
modified the Grade
Pay as shown below so as to maintain the existing local relativity: –

In terms of
GO No.234 notional effect was given from 01.01.2006 while monetary benefits
were accruable to the employees w.e.f. 01.01.2007. Separate Government Orders
were issued in respect each of the departments based on GO No.234.

3.
Thereafter, One Man Commission headed by Mr. Rajiv Ranjan, Principal Secretary
to the Government of Tamil Nadu, Industries Department was constituted to
rectify pay anomalies which had arisen as a result of
implementation of the revised pay-scales pursuant to GO No.234. Said One Man
Commission submitted its report on 31.03.2010. The State Government, through GO
Nos.254 to 340 (86 GOs) accepted the recommendations of The One Man Commission.
By way of illustration, GO No.312 dated 26.08.2010 with respect to certain
categories of Public Works Department stated as under:

“The One Man
Commission constituted in the G.O. second read above to examine anomalies, if
any, consequent on the mplementation of the recommendations of the Official
Committee 2009 has recommended for revision of scales of pay of certain categories
in Public Works Department. After careful examination, the Government has
decided to accept the recommendations made by the One Man Commission in respect
of the above department. Accordingly, Government direct that the scales of pay of the
following posts shall be revised as shown below:-

2) The
revision of scales of pay ordered in para -1 above shall take notional effect
from 1-1-2006 for the purpose of fixation of pay in the revised scales of pay
and with monetary benefit from 01-08-2010.”

4. It is a
matter of record that all Assistant Engineers who were earlier put in the
pay-scale of Rs.9300-34800 with Rs.4700 as Grade Pay were thus placed in the
revised scale of pay of Rs.15600-39100 with Rs.5400 Grade Pay, as a result of
GOs dated 26.08.2010 and the benefit in terms thereof was extended to the
concerned persons and their pay-scale stood revised accordingly.

5. The State
Government, however, issued GO No.71 dated 26.02.2011 scaling down certain
benefits which were granted in pursuance of said GOs dated 26.08.2010. Such
exercise was done without issuing any notice or affording any hearing to the
persons concerned. As a result of this exercise, 52 categories of posts in various departments
were downgraded to lower pay-scales. It was, however, made clear that whatever
payment was made in terms of the earlier decision, would not be recovered. The
State Government also constituted Pay Grievance Redressal Cell (“PGRC”, for short)
in Finance Department headed by Thiru R. Thiyagrajan, Special Secretary to
Government, Finance Department to look into the grievances and consider the
representations of the employees aggrieved as a result of scaling down of the
pay-scales.

6. Various
writ petitions were filed by the concerned employees challenging the
correctness and validity of GO No.71 dated 26.02.2011. These petitions were
dismissed by a Single Judge of the High Court by judgment and order dated
08.03.2012 passed in Writ Petition No.7006 of 2011 and all connected matters.
Since the services of Thiru R.Thiyagrajan were not available, the Single Judge
directed the State Government to re-constitute the PGRC.

7. The
decision of the Single Judge was challenged by way of Writ Appeals and the
Division Bench of the High Court by its order dated 27.03.2012 granted interim
stay except with regard to the constitution of the PGRC. Consequently, the
State Government issued GO No.123 dated 10.04.2012 and re-constituted the PGRC
with Mr. Krishnan, Secretary to the Government as the Chairperson. The PGRC
received around 4376 representations from various associations of
employees/individuals. The PGRC gave hearing to the concerned
representationists on 09.07.2012, 10.07.2012, 11.07.2012 and 16.08.2012 and
thereafter submitted its recommendations to the State Government. The relevant
portion of the recommendations was:-

“1) The
scales of pay of the employees in every pay revision from Tamil Nadu Fifth Pay
Commission is based on the parity with similar posts in Government of India.

2) In
Government of India both the Junior Engineer / Assistant Engineers are placed
at the section level and its promotional posts Assistant Executive Engineer is
placed at Sub-divisional level.

3) In
Central Public Works Department the post of Assistant Engineer are placed in
the scale of pay of Rs.9300-34800 + G.P. Rs.4600 as against the prerevised
scale of pay of Rs.7400-11100 based on the Sixth Central Pay Commission
recommendations. Further, the
Junior Engineers are also claiming pay hike given to Assistant Engineer due to
the huge variation in emoluments consequent on placing the Assistant Engineers
erroneously in Pay Band-3 (Rs.15600-39100 + G.P. Rs.5400) as both these posts are placed
at section level and discharging the same work. The comparison with Medical
Doctor is also not appropriate as there is no equivalent of Diploma holder in
that line. In the Engineering line, there is a separate category of Diploma
holders, who are Junior Engineers
and holding charge as section in-charge like Assistant Engineers.

The
recommendation of the One man Commission to place Assistant Engineers in Pay
Band-3 opened up a huge differential with Junior Engineers, which appears
unjustified. Therefore, it is appropriate that the scale of pay of Assistant
Engineers in State Government may be brought down to Pay Band-2 at
Rs.9300-34800. However, the Grade Pay of Rs.5100 already fixed in G.O.Ms.No.71,
Finance (PC) Department, dated: 26-2-2011, which is at a level above their
counterparts in Government of India would be appropriate. It also maintains an
appropriate difference of Rs.700/- in Grand Pay from Junior Engineer. The
Committee also recommend that the excess payments made till the issue of
revised orders may be waived and not recovered.

4) It is
observed that the Official Committee, 2009 had rightly placed the post of
Assistant Engineer at Rs.9300-34800 + G.P. Rs.4700 as against the prerevised
scale of pay of Rs.6500-11100. In the light of the above facts, the Committee
consider it appropriate to place the post of Assistant Engineers on par with
similar posts in Central Public Works Department and also
considering the local pay relatively among other higher posts, the Committee
recommends that it would be appropriate that the pay scale of Assistant
Engineers may be brought down to Pay Band-2 from Pay Band-3 and granted an
enhanced Grade Pay in the scale of pay
of Rs.9300-34800 + G.P. Rs.5100 i.e. with the same Grade pay as ordered in
G.O.Ms.No.71, Finance (Pay Cell) Department dated:26-02-2011.

This implies
that the Assistant Engineer in State Public Works Department would be placed
with a difference in Grade pay of Rs.500/- in Grade Pay above the Assistant
Engineers in the Central Public Works Department. Likewise, the Committee also recommends
to place the post of Executive Engineer and Assistant Executive Engineer in the
appropriate revised scale of pay of Rs.15600-39100 + GP.Rs.6600 and
Rs.15600-39100 + G.P. Rs.5400 respectively as originally recommended by the
Official Committee, 2009 duly endorsing the orders issued by Government in
G.O.Ms.No.71, Finance (Pay Cell) Department dated:26-02-2011 uniformly on par
with the equivalent posts in other Government Departments.”

8. The
recommendations of the PGRC were accepted by the State Government and GO No.242
was issued on 22.07.2013 to implement the recommendations. After quoting
certain portions of the recommendations given by the PGRC, GO No.242 stated as
under:

“After
careful examination, the Government has decided to implement the above
recommendations of the Pay Grievance Redressal Cell considering the level of
Assistant Engineer in Central Public Works Department and the consequential
changes made thereon by
endorsing / modifying the scales of pay of certain categories ordered in the
G.O.Ms. No. 71, Finance (Pay Cell) Department, dated: 26.02.2011 read above.” GO No.242
also gave a tabulated chart about various departments and insofar as Public
Works Department was concerned, the tabulated chart was as under:

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

S.No.

Name of thePost/Department

Pre-Revised Scale of Pay

Corresponding revised scale of pay +G.P

Scale of pay granted basedon OMC/subsequentGOS

Scale of PayG.O.MsNo.71 dated26.02.2011

RevisedScale of
pay

Rs.

Rs.

Rs.

Rs.

Rs.

1to32.

….

….

….

….

….

….

….

XII

PUBLIC
WORKS DEPARTMENT

33

AssistantEngineer

6500-11100

9300-34800+4700

15600-39100+5400

15600-39100+5100

9300-34800+5100

34

AssistantExecutiveEngineer

8000-13500

15600-39100+5400

15600-39100+6600

15600-39100+5400

15600-39100+5400

35

ExecutiveEngineer

10000-15200

15600-39100+6600

15600-39100+7600

15600-39100+6600

15600-39100+6600

36

HeadDraughtingOfficer

9100-14050

15600-39100+5700

15600-39100+6600

15600-39100+5700

15600-39100+5700

37.to52.

….

….

….

….

….

….

It was also
stated:

“(3) The
revision of scale of pay ordered above shall take notional effect from
01.01.2006/12.12.2007 as the case may be with monetary benefit from 01.04.2013.
However, the excess payments, if any made to the employees so far shall be
waived and the pay refixed
in the appropriate scales of pay as ordered above.”

9. Number of
writ petitions were filed challenging GO No.242 dated 22.07.2013. Those writ
petitions as well as the pending writ appeals were taken up together and
disposed of by the Division Bench of the High Court by its judgment
under appeal.

10. The
Division Bench found that by fixing higher pay by virtue of GO No.234 dated
01.06.2009 and consequential separate Government Orders issued for various
departments, the concerned government employees were paid higher salaries/pay-scales
w.e.f. 01.01.2007 and such benefits were now reduced by the Orders which were
under challenge and the reduction in benefits was without following principles
of natural justice.
Following directions were, therefore, issued by the Division Bench:

“50. As we
found illegality in not following the principles of natural justice, before
reducing the scales of pay, it is necessary that the matter is to be considered
afresh by the Government after giving opportunity to all concerned especially,
for reducing the scale of pay/grade pay. It is not in dispute that if really,
there is any pay anomaly, the government is entitled to remove the same by
following the due procedures. As rightly contended by the learned Senior
Counsels and other learned counsels for the petitioners, the One-Man Committee
and the PGRC appointed by the Government, all its members are Government
Officers and they have already decided to reduce the pay scale of 52 categories
of 20 departments, including pensioners and family pensioners in those
departments, it may not be appropriate again to permit the Government to
reconsider the issue on the recommendations of the Government
officials alone.

At this
juncture it is relevant to note that the Central Government appointed retired
Judge of the Honble Supreme Court to head the V Central Pay Commission.
Similarly, a retired Judge of Honble Supreme Court was appointed as the
Chairman of VI Central Pay Commission. The Honble Supreme Court appointed a
retired Judge of this Court to consider the pay anomaly
among the Judicial Officers/Judicial Pensioners at All India level. It is also
not disputed that while extending the Pay Commission benefits, the
technicalities as well as the legal issues regarding the claim of Equal Pay for
Equal Work, qualifications, nature of
duties etc. are also to be analysed and considered. Hence, we are of the view
that it is just and appropriate to appoint a retired Judge to head the Pay
Grievance Redressal Committee.

51. In such
circumstances, the writ appeals and writ petitions are disposed of with the
following directions:

(i) The
Government shall constitute a Pay Grievance Redressal Committee under the
Chairmanship of Honble Mr. Justice A.S. Venkatachalmoorthy, formerly Judge of
this Court, who was elevated and retired as Chief Justice of the Chattishgarh
High Court.

(ii) The
Government is at liberty to nominate one or two Senior level IAS Officers at
the level of Principal Secretary, serving/retired as Member(s) of the Pay
Grievance Redressal Committee.

(iii) The
Pay Grievance Redressal Committee shall be given specific terms of reference by
the Government, with a request to submit a report/recommendations for taking
fresh decision regarding the enhancement/reduction of the pay scales/grade pay
of 52 or more
categories of 20 or more departments, etc.

(iv) The
Government is directed to constitute the above said committee within a period
of three weeks from the date of receipt of copy of this order, prescribing time
limit, within which report/recommendations is to be submitted for taking fresh
decision.

(v) In view
of the constitution of the above said Committee as ordered above, the
implementation of G.O.Ms.No.71 dated 26.2.2011 and G.O.Ms.No.242 dated
22.7.2013 insofar as it affects any category of Government Servants/
pensioners/family pensioners, which are
not implemented as on today shall not be implemented till fresh decision is
taken.

(vi) If any
of the categories of Government servants of any department, who have been
offered higher scales of pay as on today, it is open to the Government to
implement the same insofar as the pay scales, which are beneficial to the
employees of such categories.

(vii) As we
have appointed the Chairman of the PGRC, we direct the Government of Tamil Nadu
to make available office premises with supporting staff and to provide a
Government car with driver for the use of the Chairman for effective
functioning of the Committee.

(viii) We
fix the remuneration for the Chairman of the Committee as Rs.1.50 lakhs per
month and direct the Government to sanction necessary funds towards
remuneration and for meeting other expenses for effective functioning of the
Committee.

(ix) It is
open to the Government to fix remuneration of the Members/Member of the
Committee, to be nominated by the Government, if they are retired IAS
officer(s).”

11. Two sets
of appeals have been filed in this Court challenging the decision of the
Division Bench. The first set is by the Government Employees and their
Associations submitting inter alia that once
the process undertaken by the State Government was found to be in violation of
the principles of natural justice, complete benefit of setting aside the
impugned decisions ought to have been extended. It is also submitted that the
exercise undertaken by the One Man Commission was a proper exercise and its
recommendations were accepted by the State Government after
considering the matter carefully and thus there was no occasion for the State
Government to take any different view in the matter.

On the other
hand, the second set of appeals, at the instance of the State Government
submits inter alia that the exercise undertaken by the PGRC was
after giving due opportunity to the concerned employees and their Associations
and as such the High Court was not justified in setting aside GO No.242 seeking
to implement the recommendations given by the PGRC. By interim order passed in
these matters, stay of operation of the judgment under appeal, to the extent
fresh PGRC was directed to be set up, was granted by this Court which status is
still continuing.

12. We heard
Mr. Dushyant Dave, Mr. R. Venkataramani, Mr. C.A. Sundaram, Mr. P. S. Patwalia,
Mr. Vinay Navare, learned Senior Advocates and Mr. Prashant Bhushan, learned
Advocate for the appellants in the first set of appeals and Mr. Vijay Narayan,
learned Advocate General for the State. It was submitted by the learned counsel
appearing for the Government Employees and their Associations that having
accepted the recommendations made by the One Man Commission and having given
benefits in terms of said recommendations, the State Government could not have
lowered the pay scales of the concerned employees.

On the other
hand, it is the submission of the State that the acceptance of the
recommendations of the One Man Commission resulted in greater anomalies; that
the level of Assistant Engineers, which is the entry level in various
Engineering services was wrongly clubbed with other entry level services like
Assistant Surgeons; and that as a result of upward revision for Assistant
Engineers the gap between the level of the Assistant Engineers and the
subordinate ranks got widened to a considerable level while the Assistant
Engineers and the promotional level for Assistant Engineer were brought almost
at the same levels.

According to
the learned Advocate General, various such anomalies were required to be sorted
out which in turn made the State Government to constitute the PGRC. According
to the State Government, normally the pay scales afforded to equivalent ranks
in the Central Government are higher than the ranks in the State Government but
the entry level of Assistant Engineers in the State Government, as a result of
the recommendations of the One Man Commission was kept at a level far too
higher than their counterparts in the Central Government.

13. The
Tabulated Chart which is part of GO No.242 indicates very clearly that the
Assistant Engineers who were in the pre-revised pay scale of Rs.6500-11100
(column No.3), by virtue of acceptance of the recommendations made by the 6th Central Pay
Commission were kept in the pay scale of Rs.9300-34800 with grade pay of
Rs.4700/- (column No.4) as a result of GO No.234 dated 01.06.2009, while the
next promotional level i.e. of the Assistant Executive Engineers was kept at
Rs.15600-39100 with grade pay of Rs.5400/-.

The
recommendations of the One Man Commission resulted in upward revision to the
extent of Rs.15600-39100 with grade pay of Rs.5400/- (column No.5) for the
Assistanct Engineers. The recommendations of the PGRC resulted in refixation
for Assistant Engineers in the scale of Rs.9300-34800 with marginal increase of
grade pay to Rs.5100/- (column No.7) as against what was available pursuant to
GO No.234 dated 01.06.2009.

14. The
recommendations of the PGRC dealt with the effects of the acceptance of the
recommendations by the One Man Commission. Para 3 of the recommendations quoted
hereinabove shows that certain aspects of the matter
were found to be anomalous. The submissions advanced by the learned Advocate
General also show how the difference between the Assistant Engineers and the
post immediately lower than that was getting

widened,
while at the same time, the post of Assistant Engineer and the next level of
promotion i.e. the post of Assistant Executive Engineer were brought almost at
the same level. These anomalies found by the State Government,
had to be addressed. If the State Government, therefore, constituted the PGRC,
such decision by itself cannot be found to be illegal or invalid.

15. It has
always been accepted by this Court that prescription of payscales and the
assessment in that behalf is a complex matter which requires expertise. For
instance, in Dy. Director General of Geological Survey of India
and another v. R. Yadaiah and others 1 it was
observed:

“Ordinarily,
the courts or tribunal should not go into the question of fitment of the
officers in a particular group or the pay scales thereof, and leave the matter
to the discretion and expertise of the special commission like the Pay Commission.”

In State
of Bihar and others v. Bihar Veterinary
Association and others 2 it was
observed :-

“13. If the
courts start disturbing the recommendations of the pay scale in a particular
class of service then it is likely to have cascading effect on all related
services which may result into multifarious litigation. The Fitment Committee
has undertaken the exercise and recommended the wholesale revision of the pay
scale in the State of Bihar and if one class of service is to be picked up and
granted higher pay scale as is available in the Central Government then the
whole balance will be disturbed and other services are likely to be affected
and it will result in complex situation in the State and may lead to ruination
of the finances of the State.” In Hukumchand Gupta v. ICAR 3 it was stated :-

“20.Prescription of pay scales on particular posts is a very complex exercise. It
requires assessment of the nature and quality of the duties performed and the
responsibilities shouldered by the incumbents on different posts. Even though,
the two posts may be referred to by the same name, it would not lead to the
necessary inference that the posts are identical in every manner. These are matters
to be assessed by expert bodies like the employer or the Pay Commission.”

16. It may
be stated here that the 6th Central Pay Commission comprising of experts in the field had recommended
certain pay-scales for various posts. The Official Committee which comprised of
Principal Secretary to the State of Tamil Nadu, Home Department, as Chairperson
with (i) Principal Secretary, Finance Department; (ii) Principal Secretary,
Personnel and Administrative Reforms Department; and (iii)Principal Secretary,
School Education Department as Members, had examined the matter and made
certain recommendations which were accepted by the Government by GO No.234
dated 01.06.2009.

The One Man
Commission appointed to consider the anomalies, however, recommended something
which was far in excess of what was accepted by GO No.234 dated 01.06.2009
which in turn was in tune with the recommendations of the 6th Central Pay
Commission. It is true that the Government had accepted the recommendations of
the One Man Commission but if further anomalies were found which called for
action on part of the Government, any exercise to reconsider the matter by the
State Government could not be faulted nor could the constitution of the PGRC be
said to be invalid or illegal.

17. Further,
if there was any infirmity in the exercise of power by the PGRC in not granting
adequate notice and hearing to the concerned, such infirmity could certainly be
sorted out. That is exactly what the Division Bench undertook while passing the
directions quoted hereinabove. We, therefore, see no error in the approach of
and the directions issued by the Division Bench of the High Court.

18. But, it
has been more than five years since the directions were issued by the Division
Bench of the High Court and as a result of the interim orders passed by this
Court, the PGRC could not be set up. In the circumstances, certain
modifications in the directions issued by the Division Bench in para 5 of its
order are called for and we proceed to direct:-

(A)
Direction No.(i) as issued by the Division Bench is reiterated except that Mr.
Justice A.S. Venkatachalamoorthy having now expressed his unwillingness, Mr.
Justice D. Murugesan, formerly Chief Justice, High Court of Delhi is appointed
as Chairman of the Pay Grievance Redressal Committee.

(B)
Direction No.(ii) as issued by the Division Bench is accepted and it is added
that the Chairman of the PGRC will be at liberty to co-opt any two experts as
he deems appropriate as members of the PGRC, who shall be paid such honorarium
by the State Government, as the Chairman deems appropriate.

(C)
Direction Nos.(iii) and (v) to (vii) issued by the Division Bench are accepted
and do not call for any change.

(D) Instead
of Rs.1.5 lakhs per month, we fix the honorarium of the Chairman of the PGRC at
Rs.3.5 lakhs per month but the other parts of Direction No.(viii) are
maintained.

(E)
Direction No.(ix) issued by the Division Bench is accepted and does not call
for any change.

(F) It is
further directed:-

a) Within a
week from today, the State Government shall issue appropriate orders
constituting the PGRC as stated above.

b) Within a
week thereafter, the State Government shall make appropriate and adequate
arrangements and provide office space befitting the status of the Chairperson
and other Members and also provide adequate staff, secretarial assistance and
other facilities.

c) Within
two weeks of the constitution of the PGRC all the concerned
individuals/associations shall file their

representations.
No representation filed beyond the period of two weeks shall ordinarily be
accepted by the PGRC.

d) Direction
No. (iv) issued by the Division Bench shall stand modified to the aforesaid
extent.

e) These
directions are in addition to and in further elaboration of direction No. (vii)
issued by the Division Bench.

19. It is
clarified that regardless of the decision to be taken by the PGRC, any amount
paid by way of financial benefit extended to and enjoyed by the concerned employees
shall not be recovered i.e. to say that in case the decision in pursuance of
the recommendations of the PGRC results in reduction in pay-scales or
emoluments as were granted pursuant to GOs dated 26.08.2010, such reduction
shall be prospective in application from the day the recommendations of the
PGRC come into effect.

20. It must
be stated that the recommendations of the 7th Central Pay Commission have
since been made and the issue regarding implementation of such recommendations
is presently under active consideration. The present matters which pertain to
the recommendations of the 6th Central Pay Commission therefore
need to be resolved at the earliest. In the circumstances, we request the PGRC
to conclude the entire exercise within four months from today. By way of
clarification, it is added that the affected categories shall not be permitted
to migrate to 7th Central Pay Commission scales on the basis of the higher scales
till such time as the final decision is taken.

21. Lastly,
it is clarified that the observations in the present order have been made
purely from the stand point of consideration whether the decision of the State
Government in constituting the PGRC was correct or not and not by way of
reflection on merits of the matter. The matter shall be considered by the PGRC
and the State Government purely on merits and uninfluenced by any of the
observations made by us.

22. With the
aforesaid directions these appeals are disposed of without any order as to
costs.

……………………….J.
(Uday Umesh Lalit)

……………………….J.
(Indu Malhotra)

New Delhi;

November 28, 2019.

1 (2001) 10
SCC 563

2 (2008) 11
SCC 60

3 (2012) 12
SCC 666

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