SC Upholds Order Directing Payment Of Duty Call-Up Allowance To Home Guards In Orissa At Rs.533 Per Day
The Supreme Court has upheld the Order passed by the Single Judge as confirmed by the Division Bench directing to pay to the Home Guards in Orissa, Duty CallUp Allowance at Rs.533/ per day.
The Court clarified that the arrears at the rate of Rs.533/ per day shall be paid from June 2018 instead of January 2020 as was directed by the Division Bench.
The bench of Justice M. R. Shah and Justice M.M. Sundresh was dealing with the appeals filed by the original writ petitioners working as Home Guards and the State of Orissa.
The counsel appearing for the State of Orissa submitted that the High Court had materially erred in directing the State to pay Rs.533/ per day as Duty Callup Allowance to the Home Guards and the same would be much more than the amount being paid to the Constables at the entry level recruited as per Odisha GroupC & GroupD (Contractual Appointment) Rules, 2013.
While opposing the present appeals preferred by the State, the counsel appearing on behalf of the respective Home Guards submitted that the direction issued by the Single Judge is absolutely in consonance with the judgment of the Court in the case of Grah Rakshak, Home Guards Welfare Association vs. State of Himachal Pradesh and others and the subsequent clarificatory order.
It was submitted that the Division Bench of the High Court had materially erred in restricting the benefit of DCA at Rs.533/ per day from January, 2020 only.
The Court held that “…the State of Orissa cannot be permitted to now submit that as contractual Constables appointed under Rule 2013 are being paid a fixed lump sum amount at the entry level, the Home Guards after rendering 10 to 15 years of service also shall be entitled to the same fixed salary. The aforesaid stand would be just contrary to the directions issued by this Court in the case of Grah Rakshak (supra) and the subsequent further clarificatory order.”
Thus the Court held that the High Court had rightly directed to pay the DCA at Rs.533/ per day.
On the appeals preferred by the original writ petitioners against Order restricting the benefit of DCA at Rs.533/ per day from January, 2020, the Court noted that no cogent reasons have been assigned by the Division Bench of the High Court to restrict the benefit.
However, the Court while considering the fact that there could be a huge financial burden, restricted the benefit of DCA at Rs.533/ per day from the date of filing of the writ petition before the Single Judge which would be from June 01, 2018.
“The judgment and order passed by the learned Single Judge confirmed by the Division Bench directing to pay to the Home Guards in the State, DCA at Rs.533/ per day are hereby confirmed. However, it is clarified that the arrears at the rate of Rs.533/ per day shall be paid from 01.06.2018. The arrears shall be paid within a period of three months from today.”, the Court held.
The Court also clarified that “…Home Guards shall be entitled to the periodical rise which may be available to the Police personnel of the State and the DCA to be paid to the Home Guards be periodically increased taking into consideration the minimum of the pay to which the Police personnel of the State are entitled considering periodical increase from time to time.”
Cause Title- Prakash Kumar Jena & Ors v. The State Of Odisha & Ors.