w w w . L a w y e r S e r v i c e s . i n



Siddalingappa & Others V/S The State of Karnataka Department of Energy, Rep. by its Principal Secretary & Others


Company & Directors' Information:- H-ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40300MH2007PTC175626

Company & Directors' Information:- A A ENERGY LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40100MH2005PLC157604

Company & Directors' Information:- K M ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40300UP2014PTC067293

Company & Directors' Information:- R. R. ENERGY LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40109CT2004PLC016580

Company & Directors' Information:- ENERGY INDIA CORPORATION LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40101MH2008PLC181157

Company & Directors' Information:- B & S ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40108KA2008PTC048416

Company & Directors' Information:- M. E ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51503PN1998PTC114226

Company & Directors' Information:- K ENERGY COMPANY LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40100CT2007PLC020433

Company & Directors' Information:- U R ENERGY (INDIA) PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40108GJ2011PTC067834

Company & Directors' Information:- B & G ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40107TN2006PTC061362

Company & Directors' Information:- J C I ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Converted to LLP] CIN = U40102KA2011PTC058550

Company & Directors' Information:- ENERGY INDIA LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U74899DL1998PLC096211

Company & Directors' Information:- INDIA ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED. [Strike Off] CIN = U74899DL2000PTC103993

Company & Directors' Information:- V ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40102TG2011PTC073693

Company & Directors' Information:- S M M ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40109TG2014PTC092679

Company & Directors' Information:- C & C ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U29299DL2010PTC204724

Company & Directors' Information:- U S G ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U29307TZ2005PTC012414

Company & Directors' Information:- A B T ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40108KA1983PTC005321

Company & Directors' Information:- A & T ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40106GJ2012PTC070207

Company & Directors' Information:- K E ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40300TN2011PTC080288

Company & Directors' Information:- V A R ENERGY INDIA PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40300TG2014PTC095926

Company & Directors' Information:- C & N ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40100KL2011PTC028837

Company & Directors' Information:- M K D ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U31908UP2015PTC070501

Company & Directors' Information:- C I T L ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40108TG2010PTC066844

Company & Directors' Information:- C R B ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40108TG2010PTC066845

Company & Directors' Information:- J S ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U45202HP2006PTC030006

Company & Directors' Information:- T V G ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U52100UP2014PTC066243

Company & Directors' Information:- G G ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U74899DL1994PTC058590

Company & Directors' Information:- V G ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40100MH2005PTC156544

Company & Directors' Information:- D R R ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40102TN2009PTC073741

Company & Directors' Information:- Q - ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U74920WB2012FTC182047

Company & Directors' Information:- H R ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40101RJ2003PTC018712

Company & Directors' Information:- J R J R ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40100MH2005PTC153641

Company & Directors' Information:- R M ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40108MH2003PTC142881

Company & Directors' Information:- S V E ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40100TN2009PTC073738

Company & Directors' Information:- L V S ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Under Process of Striking Off] CIN = U40101TG2010PTC068290

Company & Directors' Information:- A. S. R. ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40105TG2008PTC056907

Company & Directors' Information:- S S E ENERGY (INDIA) PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40108TG2014PTC093709

Company & Directors' Information:- K & H ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40109AP2012PTC079162

Company & Directors' Information:- P & S ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40109TG2011PTC072632

Company & Directors' Information:- P A ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40100HP2006PTC030328

Company & Directors' Information:- S & G ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U31101CH2010PTC032133

Company & Directors' Information:- P M S ENERGY INDIA PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74999DL2012PTC236645

Company & Directors' Information:- D M ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40107DL2010PTC199110

Company & Directors' Information:- S K S ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40108DL2003PTC119741

Company & Directors' Information:- C P ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40109DL2010PTC204395

Company & Directors' Information:- 3 A S ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40300DL2013PTC250263

Company & Directors' Information:- I S R ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Under Process of Striking off] CIN = U40103AP2012PTC084585

Company & Directors' Information:- T AND F ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40100MP2011PTC026065

Company & Directors' Information:- V V ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40101KA2008PTC046429

Company & Directors' Information:- E P C ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U40107KA2010PTC053645

Company & Directors' Information:- R J ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40100GJ2009PTC056990

Company & Directors' Information:- I ENERGY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U40100GJ2009PTC058473

    Writ Petition No. 30034 of 2015 c/w 17274 of 2014 (S - RES)

    Decided On, 20 February 2020

    At, High Court of Karnataka

    By, THE HONORABLE JUSTICE: S. SUJATHA

    For the Petitioner: V.R. Datar, K.B. Narayana Swamy, Advocates And For the Respondents: R1 & R2, M.V. Ramesh Jois, AGA, R3 to R5, S. Sriranga, R6, Sona M. Badiger, R7, H.V. Devaraju, R8, Ravindra Reddy, Sumana Naganand, Advocates



Judgment Text


1. Since similar and akin issues are involved in these matters, the same are heard together and disposed of by this common order.

2. The respondent Nos. 3 to 8, Electric Supply and Transmission Companies, being State of Karnataka undertakings, run Training Centres at each ESCOM to train selected candidates in the Electrician Trade as Apprentices under the Apprentices Act, 1961. Initially such training in the Industrial Training Centres (ITC) was given for a period of 3 years to SSLC passed candidates. Respondents had provided 30% quota in the vacant posts of the Assistant Lineman for the candidates with 3 years training under the Apprenticeship Training Programme at the ITCs run by them.

3. The respondent Nos.3 to 8 replaced 3 years training course by one year apprentice training course for NCVT ITI trained persons and two years apprentice training course for SCVT ITI trained persons at their ITCs. The respondents are governed by the Karnataka Electricity Board Recruitment and Promotion Regulations, Employees (Probation) Regulations and Employees (Seniority) Regulations ('Regulations' for short). These Regulations prescribe the method of recruitment and the minimum qualification for the post of Assistant Lineman and the same are as under:

Category of Post

Existing

Method of Recruitment

Minimum Qualification

Assistant Lineman

a) 50% of the sanctioned posts by Direct Recruitment of ITI qualified candidates.

i) Should have a pass certificate of 18/24 months course in "Electrician/Electronics/Electronic Mechanic" Trade from Industrial Training Institute (ITI's) recognised by the Government of Karnataka.

b) 30% of the sanctioned posts by Direct Recruitment of candidates possessing a pass certificate of three years "Lineman Trade/Electrician Trade" imparted by the Industrial Training Institutes of KEB/KPTCL.

i) Should have passed 10th Standard examination
and
Should have a pass certificate of three years "Lineman trade/Electrician Trade" imparted by the Industrial Training Institution of KEB/KPTCL.

c) 20% of the sanctioned posts by promotion from the cadre of Junior Lineman on the basis of seniority-cum-merit.

i) Should have satisfactory physical fitness and mental ability.
ii) Should be suitable and should have experience for the job requirement.
iii) Should have experience in the type of work connected to the post of Junior Lineman and should be capable to carry out the work required for the post of Assistant Lineman.
iv) These should be assessed and reported by the official superiors through reports.


The said regulations were amended as per the Notification dated 17.8.2010 and the said amended Regulations reads as under:

Category of Post

Amended as

Method of Recruitment

Minimum Qualification

Assistant Lineman

a) 40% of the sanctioned posts by Direct Recruitment of ITI "Electrician" qualified candidates.

i) Should have a pass certificate of 18/24 months course in "Electrician" Trade from Industrial Training Institute (ITI's) recognised by the Government of Karnataka.

b) 40% of the sanctioned posts by Direct Recruitment of ITI "Electronics" qualified candidates.

i) Should have a pass certificate of 18/24 months course in "Electronics/Electronic Mechanic" Trade from Industrial Training Institute (ITI's) recognised by the Government of Karnataka.

c) 20% of the sanctioned posts by promotion from the cadre of Junior Lineman on the basis of seniority-cum-merit.

i) Should have satisfactory physical fitness and mental ability.
ii) Should be suitable and should have experience for the job requirement.
iii) Should have experience in the type of work connected to the post of Junior Lineman and should be capable to carry out the work required for the post of Assistant Lineman.
iv) Should have put in a minimum service of three years as Junior Lineman.
v) These should be assessed and reported by the official superiors through reports.


4. The said amended Regulations were challenged by some of the apprentices in W.P.No.1249/2012 and connected matters. Learned Single Judge vide order dated 29.2.2012 allowed the writ petitions. The amended Regulations as per the Notification dated 17.8.2010 were quashed. The Regulations as it stood prior to the date of amendment was restored. It was declared that the ITC certificate holders from the respondent institute are eligible to apply for the post of Assistant Lineman as per the Notification dated 12.12.2011, in addition to the other directions issued.

5. On the challenge made to the said order by the KPTCL, the Division Bench of this court disposed of the appeals W.A.Nos.3074-3083/2012 [D.D.26.11.2013] with the following directions.

"12. In the light of the statements made in the aforesaid memos dated 8th November 2013 and 26th November 2013, the writ appeals filed by appellants/Corporation are disposed of with the following directions:

I) The impugned common order passed by the learned Single Judge dated 29th February 2012, in Writ Petition No.1249/2012 c/w W.P.Nos.2843- 45/2012 and W.P.Nos.1250-55/2012 (S-RES) is hereby set aside only in so far as it relates to direction Nos.(V) to (VII);

II) Direction Nos.(II) to (IV) issued by the learned Single Judge are directed and hereby confirmed.

III) In addition to the said directions, the appellant/Corporation is further directed to provide age relaxation from 12.12.2011 to these respondents as and when employment Notification is issued for filling up the post of Assistant Lineman, in the light of the memos filed by the Appellant/Corporation'

IV) Further, the appellant/Corporation is directed to refund the amount collected towards filling up of the said posts as per the Notification dated 12.12.2011, expeditiously, if the respondents have paid the prescribed fee;

V) It is made clear that the aforesaid direction No.(III) issued in these appeals shall not be made precedent to other cases."

6. Pursuant to the said order, KPTCL has effected amendment to the method of recruitment and minimum qualification is prescribed in Sl.No.7- Assistant Lineman under Chapter-II (Transmission Lines, Operation and Maintenance) of Chapter-IX of the Karnataka Electricity Board Recruitment and Promotion Regulations. The amended Sl.No.7 relevant for the purpose of present cases reads as under:

Sl.No.

Category of Post

As Existing

As Amended

7

Method of Recruitment

Minimum Qualification

Method of Recruitment

Minimum Qualification

Assistant Lineman

a) 40% of the sanctioned posts by Direct Recruitment of ITI "Electrician" qualified candidates.

i) Should have a pass certificate of 18/24 months course in "Electrician" Trade from Industrial Training Institutes (ITI's) recognised by the Government of Karnataka.

a) 50% of the sanctioned posts by Direct Recruitment of ITI qualified candidates.

i)Should have a pass certificate of 18/24 months course in "Electrician/Electronics/Electronic Mechanic" Trade from Industrial Training Institute (ITI's) recognised by the Government of Karnataka.

b) 40% of the sanctioned posts by Direct Recruitment of ITI "Electronics " qualified candidates.

i) Should have a pass certificate of 18/24 months course in "Electronic/Electronics Mechanic" Trade from Industrial Training Institute (ITI's) recognised by the Government of Karnataka.

b)30% of the sanctioned posts by Direct Recruitment of candidates possessing a pass certificate of three years "Lineman trade/Electrician Trade"imparted by the Industrial Training Institutes of KEB/KPTCL.

i) Should have passed 10th Standard examination and Should have a pass certificate of three years "Lineman Trade/Electrician Trade" imparted by the Industrial Training Institution of KEB/KPTCL


Subsequently Recruitment Notification dated 3.3.2014 has been issued by the KPTCL.

7. The said amendment effected vide order dated 30.12.2013 is challenged herein inter alia seeking a direction to the respondent No.3 to amend the Recruitment and Promotion Regulations at Annexure-II to the Regulations, in Annexure-II para.7 so as to include the candidates possessing two years ITI course who have undergone one year/two years training in Electrician Trade at the ITCs run by the respondent Nos.3 to 8 (KPTCL/ESCOMs) as against 30% quota prescribed for internally trained apprentices and permit them to apply for the recruitment of Assistant Lineman in respondent Nos.3 to 8 employment.

8. Learned counsel for the petitioners submitted that the respondent Nos.3 to 8 having stopped imparting three years training in Electrician Trade for candidates with SSLC qualification at their ITCs being replaced by selecting candidates with pass in SSLC + pass in ITI course of two years in Electrician Trade + one year training (apprenticeship) in Electrician Trade at their ITCs, it was imperative on them to amend the KEB Recruitment and Promotion Regulations so as to make the candidates with two years ITI course and one year training at their ITCs also eligible for the post of Assistant Lineman against 30% quota.

9. It was argued that the purpose of imparting training in the Electrician Trade by the ITCs run by the respondent Nos.3 to 8 is to create trained and skilled workforce which would be available to the respondents relating to the recruitment of 30% quota would become redundant in view of the amendment effected vide Notification dated 30.12.2013.

10. Learned counsel appearing for the petitioners have referred to the provisions of the Apprentices Act, 1961 to contend that the training imparted to them as apprentices and their legitimate expectation of securing employment in the quota reserved would be defeated if their requests are turned down.

11. Reference was made to the judgment of the Hon'ble Apex Court in the case of U.P.State Road Transport Corporation and Another v. U.P.Parivahan Nigam, (1995)2 SCC 1.

12. Learned counsel for the respondent Nos.3 to 8 submitted that the Regulations were amended pursuant to the directions issued by the Division Bench in W.A.No.3074-3083/2012, as such the challenge to the impugned Regulations is not sustainable. The relief claimed by the petitioners to direct the respondents to amend the Regulations altering the qualification prescribed for the recruitment of Assistant Lineman is untenable. The amended qualification was necessary in view of the various developments including the fact that ITC was discontinued from the year 2002 itself and the last batch trained was in 2005. It was argued that the persons who have two years training certificate from ITI are eligible to apply to the post of Assistant Lineman under clause (a) wherein, 40% reservation is provided. The petitioners being eligible under the said category of 7[a], without opting for the same, are claiming a separate quota of reservation, in view of undergoing 1 year training with ITC as an apprentice. It was contended that no vested right has been accrued to the apprentice in view of the training imparted. Learned counsel has placed reliance on the following judgments.

1. Mallikarjuna Rao and others v. State of Andhra Pradesh and others reported in (1990)2 SCC 707.

2. J. Ranga Swamy v. Government of Andhra Pradesh reported in (1990)1 SCC 288

3. V.K.Sood v. Secretary, Civil Aviation & others reported in JT 1993(3) S.C. 520.

4. State of Rajasthan v. Lata Arun reported in (2002)6 SCC 252

5. Mohd. Rafi Kodagali v. State of Karnataka and others (W.P.No.3611/2006).

6. Chairman/MD, Mahanadi Coalfields Limited & others v. Sadashib Behera and others reported in (2005)2 SCC 396.

13. I have carefully considered the submissions of the learned counsel appearing for the parties and perused the material on record.

The points that arise for consideration are:

1. Whether a writ of mandamus could be issued to the respondents to modify the amended regulations vide Notification dated 30.12.2013 prescribing the qualification for the recruitment of Assistant Lineman?

2. To what extent the petitioners are entitled to the relief if any, in furtherance of one year apprentice training certificate obtained by them?

Re: Point No.1:

14. It is well settled law that ordinarily the power of the executive cannot be exercised by the courts. No directions or advisory sermons to the executive can be issued in respect of the sphere which is exclusively within the domain of the executive. This view is fortified by the judgment of the Hon'ble Apex Court in the case of Mallikarjuna Rao, supra, whereby their Lordships have held as under:

"11. The observations of the High Court which have been made as the basis for its judgment by the Tribunal were only of advisory nature. The High Court was aware of its limitations under Article 226 of the Constitution of India and as such the learned Judge deliberately used the words 'advisable' while making the observations. It is neither legal nor proper for the High Courts or the Administrative Tribunals to issue directions or advisory-sermons to the executive in respect of the sphere which is exclusively within the domain of the executive under the Constitution. We are bound to react scowlingly to any such advice."

15. Qualifications for appointment would certainly come within the domain of the employer. It is not for the court to assess the comparative merits and decide or direct what should be the qualification to be prescribed for the post called by the employer. The Hon'ble Apex Court in the case of J. Ranga Swamy, supra, at para.6 has observed thus:

"6. So far as the second plea is concerned, admittedly, the petitioner does not have, while the respondent has, a doctorate in nuclear physics. The plea of the petitioner is that, for efficient discharge of the duties of the post in question, the diploma in radiological physics (as applied in Medicine) from the Bhabha Atomic Research center (BARC) held by him is more relevant than a doctorate in nuclear physics. It is submitted that in all corresponding posts elsewhere, a diploma in radiological physics is insisted upon and that, even in the State of Andhra Pradesh, all other physicists working in the line, except the respondent, have the diploma of the BARC. It is not for the Court to consider the relevance of qualifications prescribed for various posts. The post in question is that of a Professor and the prescription of a doctorate as a necessary qualification therefor is nothing unusual. Petitioner also stated before us that, to the best of his knowledge, there is no doctorate course anywhere in India in radiological physics. That is perhaps why a doctorate in nuclear physics has been prescribed. There is nothing prima facie preposterous about this requirement. It is not for us to assess the comparative merits of such a doctorate and the BARC diploma held by the petitioner and decide or direct what should be the qualifications to be prescribed for the post in question. It will be open to the petitioner, if so advised, to move the college, university, Government, Indian Medical Council or other appropriate authorities for a review of the prescribed qualifications and we hope that, if a doctorate in nuclear physics is so absolutely irrelevant for the post in question as is sought to be made out by the petitioner, the authorities concerned will take expeditious steps to revise the necessary qualifications needed for the post appropriately. But, on the qualifications as they stand today, the petitioner is not eligible to the post and cannot legitimately complain against his non-selection."

16. In the case of Latha Arun supra, the Hon'ble Apex Court while considering the eligibility qualification for admission in General Nursing and Midwifery and Staff Nurse Courses has held that the prescribed eligibility qualification for admission to a course or for recruitment to or promotion in service are matters to be considered by the appropriate authority. It is observed that these matters relate to matters in the realm of policy decision to be taken by the state government or the authority vested with power under any statute. It is not for the Courts to determine whether a particular educational qualification possessed by a candidate should or should not be recognised as equivalent qualification to the prescribed qualification in the case.

17. In Mohd. Rafi Kodagali supra, the Coordinate Bench of this Court while adjudicating upon the challenge made to the notification effecting amendment to Regulation 6[a][iii] under Chapter I of the Karnataka Electricity Board Recruitment and Promotion Regulations, Employees [Probation] Regulations and Employees [Seniority] Regulations which had altered the minimum prescribed regulations, held that in all public employment, opportunities are not available to all persons. Unless there is something radically wrong in prescribing the very qualification which is one of a person possessing a certificate issued by ITI, recognised by the State Government in certain subjects, not permitting the other qualifications, does not amount to an act of discrimination. Thus the job qualification prescribed by the employer does not warrant any interference by the Court.

18. In the case of U.P.Parivahan Nigam Shishukhs Berozgar Sangh and Others, supra, the Hon'ble Apex Court in the context of the training imparted to the apprentice vis-a-vis the object of enacting the Apprentice Act, 1961, held that the legislature did desire and make adequate provision to see that the competent persons receive due training to cater to the need of increasing demand for skilled craftsman on one hand and to improve the employment potential of the trainees on the other. What is indeed required is to see that the nation gets the benefit of time, money and energy spent on the trainees which would be so when they are employed in preference to non-trained direct recruits which would also needs the legitimate expectation of the trainees.

19. In the light of the aforesaid judgments, what emerges is prescribing the minimum qualification for a post lies in the domain of the employer. Such discretionary powers coming within the realm of policy decision of the employer-corporation and more particularly, such amendment to the notification impugned being made pursuant to the decision of the Division Bench of this Court as aforesaid, neither the notification impugned can be held to be illegal or arbitrary nor this Court can issue a writ of mandamus to the respondent - Corporation to prescribe a qualification which in the opinion of the court is suitable. Thus, no writ of mandamus could be issued to the respondents to amend the regulations to modify the qualifications for the direct recruitment of Assistant Linemen.

Re: Point No.2:

20. However, considering the training imp

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arted to the petitioners for one year, the same requires to be considered by the respondents to extract the skill and work craft of the petitioners keeping in mind the time, money and energy spent on those trainees. The prime request of the petitioners is to change the qualification criteria relating to 30% of the sanctioned posts by direct recruitment of candidates possessing one year ITI certificate i.e., SSLC + 2 years ITI programme and one year ITC in view of the training of ITC being discontinued from 2002 itself. 21. Inviting applications from candidates having three years ITC training prima-facie appears to be not in consonance with the changed pattern of imparting ITC training of one year by the respondents. It is true that such trainees are qualified to recruitment of Assistant linemen in terms of 7-(a) of the amended qualification, if they possess two years ITI training but their one year training under ITC becomes futile. At most certain weightage could be given to the trainees who have undergone the ITC training. 22. No doubt the affidavit filed by Deputy General Manger, KPTCL depicts total number of posts notified for three years ITC candidates as 662 for which total 5026 applications are received from the candidates of three years ITC (KEB/KPTCL) trained candidates for the post Assistant Linemen, the same would not preclude the respondents to consider the request of the petitioners to provide them some priority giving weightage for the ITC training which they have undergone by investing the precious time of their life. 23. The employer being the competent authority to take a decision in the matter, the petitioners are at liberty to file representations before the respondents 1 to 3 and if such representations are filed within four weeks from the date of receipt of certified copy of the order, the same shall be considered by the respondents 1 to 3 in accordance with law keeping in mind the decision of the Hon'ble Apex Court in U.P.State Road Transport Corporation, supra, and such decision shall be taken in an expedite manner, in any event, not later than eight weeks from the date of receipt of the representations. Writ petition stands disposed of accordingly.
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