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T.S. Dhanaraj & Another v/s The State of Tamil Nadu Rep. by the Secretary to Government, Municipal Administration and Water Supply Department, Chennai & Others


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    W.P. Nos. 23123 & 29383 of 2008

    Decided On, 27 September 2021

    At, High Court of Judicature at Madras

    By, THE HONOURABLE DR. JUSTICE ANITA SUMANTH

    For the Petitioner: R. Prem Narayan, Advocate. For the Respondents: R1, C. Selvaraj Government Advocate, R2 & R3, Karthikaa Ashok, Standing Counsel.



Judgment Text

(Prayer: Writ Petition filed under Article 226 of the Constitution of India praying to Writ of Certiorarified Mandamus to call for the records in pursuant to the impugned portion of G.O.Ms.No.283 Municipal Administration and Water Supply Department dated 17.03.88 which reads “To Regularize their services from the date of issue of orders” and Quash the same and consequently direct the respondent to regularize the services of the petitioner in the post of Junior Assistant with effect from his initial date of appointment on 02.03.79 and revise the salary and pension and pay the arrears and other consequential monetary benefits.)

1. The petitioner in W.P.No.23123 of 2008 was appointed as temporary casual labour in the post of Time Keeper in the Corporation of Chennai on 29.12.1969 and thereafter absorbed as permanent labour in the post of Switcher vide proceedings dated 29.10.1975 in regular time scale of pay. He was promoted to the post of Junior Assistant on 02.03.1979, simultaneous with the regularization of his service. On 24.08.1992, he was granted selection grade and promoted to the post of selection Grade Assistant on 04.02.2002. He attained superannuation on 31.08.2006.

2. The petitioner in W.P.No.29383 of 2008 was also appointed as temporary casual labour in the Electrical Lab Department in the Corporation of Chennai in the year 1971 and thereafter absorbed as Attender in the year 1977 on regular basis in regular time scale of pay. He was further promoted as Junior Assistant in the year 1979, Assistant in the year 1992 and License Inspector in the year 2004. He attained superannuation on 31.01.2006.

3. The petitioner in W.P.No.23123 of 2008 had initially sought a mandamus directing the respondents, being the State/R1, Commissioner, Corporation of Chennai/R2 and Chief Accounts Officer/R3 to regularize his services in the post of Junior Assistant from the date of his appointment on 02.03.1979 and accord him all consequential benefits of revision of salary and pension as well as a direction for the pay over of the arrears within a time frame to be fixed by the Court.

4. The petitioner in W.P.No.29383 of 2008 had initially sought a Writ of Certiorarified Mandamus challenging order dated 07.10.2008 passed by R2 rejecting his request seeking regularization from the date of his appointment as Junior Assistant, i.e., from 23.03.1979 as well as for a direction to accord him all consequential benefits of revision of salary and pension as well as a direction for the pay over of the arrears within the time frame to be fixed by the Court.

5. Pending Writ Petitions, both the petitioners amended their prayers to a Writ of Certiorarified Mandamus quashing the impugned portion of G.O.Ms.No.283, Municipal Administration and Water Supply Department dated 17.03.1988 (G.O.) to the extent to which the G.O., though providing for regularization, restricts the regularization only from the date of issue of orders and instead direct the respondents to regularize their services from the initial dates of appointment, being 02.03.1979 and 23.03.1979 respectively with all consequential benefits. The prayer was amended on 14.07.2014.

6. The impugned G.O. had been passed based on the proposals sent by R2 seeking ratification of the appointments of 108 Junior Assistants who had been promoted from basic service. The petitioners are admittedly two such and figure in as Serial Nos. 16 and 44 of the annexure to the G.O. While accepting the proposals, the relief was restricted to the date of issuance of order alone. It is the case of the petitioners that their promotion to the post of Junior Assistants was against permanent vacancies and in regular time scale of pay. Having held permanent posts from 02.03.1979 and 23.03.1979 respectively, the ratification of their posts should also be from date of entry into that post.

7. The relevant portion of the G.O. reads thus:

GOVERNMENT OF TAMIL NADU ABSTRACT

Establishment - Corporation of madras-Appointment of junior Assistants from the employees working in lower categories-ratification-orders issued MUNICIPAL ADMINISTRATION AND WATER SUPPLY DEPARTMENT

G.O.Ms.No.283 Dated: 17.3.1988

Read:

From the Commissioner, Corporation of Madras letter GLC/A5/13908/82, dt.29.3.83, 12.11.83 and 23.1.87.

From the examiner of Local Fund Accounts, K. Dis No.43622/83, dt 16 3.83.

ORDER

The Commissioner corporation of madras has reported that the post of 108 Junior Assistants in the Corporation of Madras have been filled up from the lower categories such as labourers, peons, Clerical Attenders, Tax Collectors, Field Assistants, etc. when there were no approved rule or by laws governing the posts under class III and IV of corporation of madras and requested the Government to ratify the action in having filled 108 posts of Junior Assistants from the Various lower categories.

………….

The Government examined the proposal of the commissioner, Corporation of madras carefully and ratify the action of the commissioner, corporation of madras in having filled up 108 posts of junior Assistants., from among the various lower categories when there were by-laws, subject to the conditions stipulated by the examiner of Local Fund Accounts referred to in para2 above and to regularize their service from the date of issue of orders. The Commissioner, corporation of madras is requested to initiate disciplinary action against the appointing authority for having made suo-moto, the appointment of 108 junior Assistants made from various lower categories without the concurrence of the competent higher authorities and to send a report to Government at the earliest possible time.

(BY ORDER OF THE GOVERNOR)

R.A.SEETHARAM DAS SPECIAL COMMISSIONER AND SECRETARY TO GOVERNMENT.

8. The petitioners were given to understand and hence believed that the Corporation Council had passed a resolution bearing No.505/98 dated 26.06.1998 deciding to regularize the services of 108 Junior Assistants with effect from 02.03.1979 and 23.03.1979 and necessary entries had also come to be made in their service registers. They would state that the fact that the Corporation Council had done no such thing as they believed, was known to them only after retirement when the pensionary benefits and monthly pension were due and they came to understand that necessary ratification orders had not been obtained from the Government for retrospective regularization of service. 9. On the heels of G.O.283 of 1988, proceedings bearing No.18908/82 dated 27.07.1998 have come to be passed proposing regularization of the petitioners from 17.03.1988, being the date of the G.O., extracted below:

“TAMIL”

10. The petitioners had filed Writ Petitions earlier in W P .Nos.21991 and 85 of 2007 seeking a mandamus to direct the respondents to settle all the pensionary benefits including gratuity and commutation to the petitioners by calculating the services with effect from the date of promotion as Junior Assistant as qualifying service and pay the arrears and monthly pension with interest and this Court had disposed the Writ Petitions on 28.06.2007 and 01.07.2008 respectively directing the respondents to consider their representations and pass final orders within six (6) and four (4) weeks respectively. The impugned orders have been passed as a consequence of the aforesaid directions as against which the present writ petitions have been filed.

11. The petitioners rely on the judgment of the Hon’ble Supreme Court in the case of Direct Recruits, Class II Engineering Officers Association V. State of Maharashtra (AIR 1990 SC 1607) that, according to them, settles the proposition that employees are entitled for regularization from initial date of appointment for the purpose of service benefits.

12. Per contra, Ms.Karthikaa Ashok, learned counsel for the Corporation, apart from stating that the interpretation accorded to the aforesaid judgment by the petitioners was flawed, would also, for her part, rely upon the judgments of the Hon’ble Supreme Court in the case of Santosh Kumar & Others V. G.R.Chawla & Others ((2003) 10 SCC 513), Vinod Giri Goswami and others V. The State of Uttarakhand and ors. (Civil Appeal No.1606 of 2020 dated 14.02.2020) and Rashi Mani Mishra and others V. State of Uttarpradesh (Civil appeal no.10788 of 2016 dated 28.07.2021)

13. The vexed issue that arises for my consideration in these matters is the claim for seniority by promotes vis--vis direct recruits.It would thus be relevant to discuss the judgments that have been cited at the Bar touching upon the same issue. In the case of Direct Recruits Class II Engineering Officers Association (herein after referred to as ‘Direct Recruit’s case) (supra) the Court, at para 11, sets out the trajectory that the litigation had taken in that matter since 1972 when the dispute had been brought to the Bombay High Court as well as various twists and turns thereafter.

14. The Bench also notes the march of law in the interim, settling the position that the claim to seniority by promotes based on continuous officiation had been accepted by the Hon’ble Supreme Court in the case of S.B.Patwardhan and others V. State of Maharashtra and others (1977) 3 SCR 775.

15. The direct recruits however did not give up the fight and filed a fresh Writ Petition in 1984 that came to be dismissed by the Bombay High Court leading to the Civil Appeals that were decided by the Constitution Bench of the Hon’ble Supreme Court in 1990. The decision of the Division Bench of the Hon’ble Supreme Court in Patwardhan’s case had also been, in the interim, referred to a Larger Bench for examination of correctness of the same.

16. When the matters were taken up for hearing, the plea that was advanced was that the ‘principle laid down in Patwardhan’s case was unsound and fit to be overruled.’ However, after considering the judgment and hearing the arguments advanced, the Bench expresses its complete agreement with the ratio decidendi, being that of seniority of an employee/Government servant who satisfies the following three conditions (i) who holds the requisite qualifications for the said post (ii) whose appointment has been made following the Rules applicable for substantive appointments and (iii) who has admittedly continuously officiated/been in service.

17. As far as confirmation of the employment is concerned, they say that ‘confirmation is one of the inglorious uncertainties of government service depending neither on efficiency of the incumbent nor on the availability of substantive vacancies.’ Thus, even a temporary appointment which is compliant with the trifecta of conditions aforesaid, would be eligible for the claim of seniority, equal to that claimed by a person who has been ‘regularly’ appointed. Ultimately, the judgment in Patwardhan’s case stood affirmed.

18. In summation, the Bench holds thus:

44. To sum up, we hold that:

(A) Once an incumbent is appointed to a post according to rule, his seniority has to be counted from the date of his appointment and not according to the date of his confirmation.

The corollary of the above rule is that where the initial appointment is only ad hoc and not according to rules and made as a stop-gap arrangement, the officiation in such post cannot be taken into account for considering the seniority.

(B) If the initial appointment is not made by following the procedure laid down by the rules but the appointee continues in the post uninterruptedly till the regularisation of his service in accordance with the rules, the period of officiating service will be counted.

(C) When appointments are made from more than one source, it is permissible to fix the ratio for recruitment from the different sources, and if rules are framed in this regard they must ordinarily be followed strictly.

(D) If it becomes impossible to adhere to the existing quota rule, it should be substituted by an appropriate rule to meet the needs of the situation. In case, however, the quota rule is not followed continuously for a number of years because it was impossible to do so the inference is irresistible that the quota rule had broken down.

(E) Where the quota rule has broken down and the appointments are made from one source in excess of the quota, but are made after following the procedure prescribed by the rules for the appointment, the appointees should not be pushed down below the appointees from the other source inducted in the service at a later date.

(F) Where the rules permit the authorities to relax the provisions relating to the quota, ordinarily a presumption should be raised that there was such relaxation when there is a deviation from the quota rule.

(G) The quota for recruitment from the different sources may be prescribed by executive instructions, if the rules are silent on the subject. (H) If the quota rule is prescribed by an executive instruction, and is not followed continuously for a number of years, the inference is that the executive instruction has ceased to remain operative.

(I) The posts held by the permanent Deputy Engineers as well as the officiating Deputy Engineers under the State of Maharashtra belonged to the single cadre of Deputy Engineers.

(J) The decision dealing with important questions concerning a particular service given after careful consideration should be respected rather than scrutinised for finding out any possible error. It is not in the interest of Service to unsettle a settled position.

19. The ratio of the aforesaid judgment has been reiterated thereafter in State of West Bengal V. Aghore Nath Dey (1993) 3 SCC 371, where it was reiterated that even an adhoc appointee could lay claim to seniority if he had the benefit of longitude in service, if the appointment was in compliance of applicable Rules and he had the necessary qualifications at the time of appointment.

20. In State of Karnataka V. M.L.Kesari ((2010) 9 SCC 247) an important distinction came to be made between what would constitute an ‘irregular’ appointment and an ‘illegal’ appointment. Where appointments are made or continued as against an unsanctioned post or where the persons appointed do not possess the prescribed minimum qualifications, the appointments must be considered as ‘illegal’. However, whether the candidate possess prescribed qualifications and had been recruited/working in a sanctioned post, his appointment would only be ‘irregular’ if his selection had been without undergoing the proper process of open competitive selection.

21. In the present case, the petitioners have completed their Secondary School Leaving Certificate (SSLC) courses and hence admittedly possess the necessary qualification for the posts in which they had been placed, that had been duly sanctioned. The ratio in Direct Recruits case was thus pressed into service and the petitioners would thus plead regularisation of service from 1979 onwards and all consequential benefits.

22. Learned counsel for the respondents would draw my attention to the judgment of the Hon’ble Supreme Court in the case of Santosh Kumar (supra) and more recently in the cases of Vinod Giri Goswami and others V. The State of Uttarakhand and ors. (Civil Appeal No.1606 of 2020 dated 14.02.2020) and Rashi Mani Mishra and others V. State of Uttarpradesh (Civil appeal no.10788 of 2016 dated 28.07.2021).

23. In the case of Santhosh Kumar (supra), the procedure prescribed under Rule 7 of the Uttar Pradesh Regularization of Adhoc Appointments (for posts within the purview of the Public Service Commission) Rules, 1979 had not been followed. Rule 7 stipulated that seniority shall be fixed strictly in accordance with relevant service Rules and as such, the State ought not to have picked out the promotes and promoted them so as to enable them to steal a march over the direct recruits in the matter of seniority. Thus, and since the regularization rules required promotees or adhoc appointees, whose services had been regularized, to be placed below persons to be appointed in accordance with the relevant service Rules, the action of the State Government in fixing seniority contra to Rule 7 was held to be bad.

24. This case is relied on in the context of the By-Laws for Class III & IV Services of the Corporation of Madras, 1981, which, according to learned counsel for Corporation, provide for the fixation of seniority in the manner as has been done in the present case. Thus, and since the By-laws provide for a certain methodology for the fixation of seniority, the respondents are bound by the same. She relies on the following portion of the By-laws.

THE MADRAS CORPORATION CLASS III & IV SERVICES BY-LAWS 1981 Read the following note of the Commissioner dated 21.08.81:-

The By-Law for Class III & IV Services of the Corporation of Madras were framed as contemplated under Section 86 (i) (ii) read with Section 349 of the M.C.M.C.Act and forwarded to Government as early in 1976, with the approval of the Special Officer - Council for sanction.

The Deputy Secretary to Government, R.D. & L.A. Department in his letter No.158765/M6/78-38 dated 22.8.1980 requested to revise the By-Laws duly incorporating the latest orders of the Government in respect of reservations to Backward Classes/Scheduled Castes and also modifying the minimum General Educational Qualification in pursuant to the introduction of 10+2.

The draft By-Laws for Class III & IV Services of the Madras Corporation is the main By-Laws which prescribes the method of recruitment and qualification to such of those posts coming under common categories Class III & IV Services.

………………..

It may be stated in this connection that there are some categories with different nomenclature though the scale of pay, qualification, method of recruitment are identical. It is therefore felt desirable to club all those categories whose scales of pay, qualification, etc., are one and the same and to redesignate the category on par with those in Government side, as detailed below:-

i) The scale of pay of Superintendents and Head Clerk of Council Department and Superintendent of Taxes in R.D. are one and the same and the categories may be brought under one cadre and redesignated as SENIOR SUPERINTENDENT.

(ii) The posts of Section Manager, Divisional Accountant, Accountant, Out-door Accountant, Head Clerk, Head Accountant, Senior Accountant Enquiry Clerk, Accounts Committee Clerk and Stationery Clerk are carrying identical scale of pay and responsibilities. The feeder posts for the above categories is also one and the same i.e. Assistant. Further all the above categories are the feeder posts for the post of Superintendent. As it has been suggested to redesignate the post of Superintendent as "Senior Superintendent" the Section Managers and allied categories listed above may be brought under one name and redesignated as JUNIOR SUPERINTENDENT.

(iii) There are certain posts in the cadre of Rs.265-425 having different nomenclatures such as Reference Supplier, Clerical Attender, Process Server and Attender. Except the post of Attender which comes under Class IV all the three posts are coming under Class III Services. The scales of pay and the nature of work for the above categories are one and the same and it is justificable to bring the post of Attenders too into Class III Service by which they will have the facility of leave benefits and all the above four posts may be brought into one category and styled as RECORD CLERK as is prevalent in Government. As the post of Record Clerk is prescribed as the feeder post for the post of Junior Assistant, the qualification has also been prescribed as Minimum General Education Qualification.

(iv) The posts of Peon, Lascar (under Establishment), Cycle Peon, Conservancy Peon, are carrying identical scales of pay and status. These posts, if approved, may be clubbed together and brought under one category redesignated as Basic Servant which is prevalent in Government.

The draft Madras Corporation Subordinate Services By-Laws, 1981 (Part I & II) which includes General By-Laws and the statement (Table) showing the categories of posts coming under General Services Class III & IV) together with the qualification, method of recruitment, etc., to those categories, as well as the special tests prescribed, is placed before the Special officer – Council.

25. I am unable to accept this argument. What has been relied upon is only a draft by-law which was a work-in-progress from the late 1970’s and which ultimately came into force only in the year 1986. This will be clear from the conclusion of the draft which states as follows:

THE MADRAS CORPORATION CLASS III & IV SERVICES BY-LAWS 1981 Read the following note of the Commissioner dated 21.08.81:-

The By-Law for Class III & IV Services of the Corporation of Madras were framed as contemplated under Section 86 (i) (ii) read with Section 349 of the M.C.M.C.Act and forwarded to Government as early in 1976, with the approval of the Special Officer - Council for sanction.

26. Thus, though the draft was prepared and forwarded for sanction as early as in 1976, it saw the light of day as a binding By-Law only thereafter. As far as the Council Resolution is concerned, the argument of the learned counsel for the Corporation is to the effect that it was not in compliance with the 1981 By-Law. I am not persuaded by this argument, as admittedly, the By-Law was neither notified nor in force at the time when the sanction was accorded by the Corporation and remained in draft form for several years. Thus, reliance upon the by-law merely to negate the appointments of the petitioners as Junior Assistants in 1979, even prior to its passing, cannot be countenanced. This argument is rejected.

27. In the case of Vinod Giri Goswami (supra), the issue related to the fixation of inter se seniority between the direct recruits and promotee Deputy Collectors in the State of Uttarakhand. Candidates who had been promoted on adhoc basis in 2004 claimed seniority over and above direct recruits appointed in 2005 and challenged the seniority list that placed the direct recruits above them. Their contention was very similar to that of the petitioners before me and they claim that their continuous and officiating service should have been taken into account for determining their seniority as Deputy Collectors.

28. Great reliance was placed by them upon the judgment in the Direct Recruits case (supra). The Bench crystallizes two issues for decision, the first relating to the right of the promotees to count the period of their adhoc service for determination of seniority and the second pertaining to correctness or otherwise of an Office Memorandum. We are not concerned with the second issue and would confine the discussion to the first issue alone.

29. The Bench discussed and explained the summary at paragraph No.44 of the Direct Recruits case, extracted at paragraph 18 of this order. The phrase ‘according to rule’ was held to mean compliance with all conditions as set out under the applicable rules and it was only if the adhoc employees appointed satisfied this condition that their appointments could be regularized, subject to the employee having continued in uninterrupted service thereafter.

30. If the aforesaid conditions were satisfied, then the period of officiating service was to be counted in the fixation of seniority. The principles laid down as above, in the case of Direct Recruits are referred to in the case of Aghore Nath Dey (supra), and paragraphs 22 to 25 thereof state as follows:

“22. There can be no doubt that these two conclusions have to be read harmoniously, and conclusion (B) cannot cover cases which are expressly excluded by conclusion (A). We may, therefore, first refer to conclusion (A). It is clear from conclusion (A) that to enable seniority to be counted from the date of initial appointment and not according to the date of confirmation, the incumbent of the post has to be initially appointed ‘according to rules’. The corollary set out in conclusion (A), then is, that ‘where the initial appointment is only ad hoc and not according to rules and made as a stopgap arrangement, the officiation in such posts cannot be taken into account for considering the seniority’. Thus, the corollary in conclusion (A) expressly excludes the category of cases where the initial appointment is only ad hoc and not according to rules, being made only as a stopgap arrangement. The case of the writ 2 (1993) 3 SCC 371 [16] .

23. This being the obvious inference from conclusion (A), the question is whether the present case can also fall within conclusion (B) which deals with cases in which period of officiating service will be counted for seniority. We have no doubt that conclusion (B) cannot include, within its ambit, those cases which are expressly covered by the corollary in conclusion (A), since the two conclusions cannot be read in conflict with each other.

24. The question, therefore, is of the category which would be covered by conclusion (B) excluding therefrom the cases covered by the corollary in conclusion (A).

25. In our opinion, the conclusion (B) was added to cover a different kind of situation, wherein the appointments are otherwise regular, except for the deficiency of certain procedural requirements laid down by the rules. This is clear from the opening words of the conclusion (B), namely, ‘if the initial appointment is not made by following the procedure laid down by the ‘rules’ and the latter expression ‘till the regularisation of his service in accordance with the rules’. We read conclusion (B), and it must be so read to reconcile with conclusion (A), to cover the cases where the initial appointment is made against an existing vacancy, not limited to a fixed period of time or purpose by the appointment order itself, and is made subject to the deficiency in the procedural requirements prescribed by the rules for adjudging suitability of the appointee for the post being cured at the time of regularisation, the appointee being eligible and qualified in every manner for a regular appointment on the date of initial appointment in such cases. Decision about the nature of the appointment, for determining whether it falls in this category, has to be made on the basis of the terms of the initial appointment itself and the provisions in the rules. In such cases, the deficiency in the procedural requirements laid down by the rules has to be cured at the first available opportunity, without any default of the employee, and the appointee must continue in the post uninterruptedly till the regularisation of his service, in accordance with the rules. In such cases, the appointee is not to blame for the deficiency in the procedural requirements under the rules at the time of his initial appointment, and the appointment not being limited to a fixed period of time is intended to be a regular appointment, subject to the remaining procedural requirements of the rules being fulfilled at the earliest. In such cases also, if there be any delay in curing the defects on account of any fault of the appointee, the appointee would not get the full benefit of the earlier period on account of his default, the benefit being confined only to the period for which he is not to blame. This category of cases is different from those covered by the corollary in conclusion (A) which relates to appointment only on ad hoc basis as a stopgap arrangement and not according to rules. It is, therefore, not correct to say, that the present cases can fall within the ambit of conclusion (B), even though they are squarely covered by the corollary in conclusion (A).”

31. At paragraph 13 onwards, the principles laid down and explained in Direct Recruits case and Aghore Nath Dey (supra) have been applied to the case of candidates in Vinod Giri Goswami (supra) to the following effect:

13. In the instant case, the promotees were appointed on ad hoc basis in the year 2004. There is no dispute regarding their appointment on a regular basis in the year 2007. According to the 1982 Rules and the 2005 Rules, appointment by promotion to the post of Deputy Collector shall be as per the Promotion for Selection in consultation with the Uttar Pradesh Promotion by Selection in Consultation with Public Service Commission (Procedure) Rules, 1970. Procedure for promotion is laid down in the 1970 Rules which provide that the eligibility list or lists have to be forwarded by the State Government to the Commission which conducts the selection. The appointment of the promotees in the year 2004 is on ad hoc basis for a period of one year without following the procedure prescribed under the Uttara

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nchal Promotion by Selection in consultation with Public Service Commission (Procedure) Rules, 2003. As the promotions in 2004 were made in clear violation of the Rules, the promotees are not entitled to claim seniority from the dates of initial appointments as Deputy Collectors. The High Court committed an error in treating the ad hoc appointments of the promotees to be only procedurally defective to give them the benefit of the ad hoc service by applying the judgment in Direct Recruit Class II Engineering Officers’ Association (supra). The High Court further went wrong in holding that the promotees were entitled for the benefit of ad hoc service in view of proviso to sub-rule (4) of Rule 24 of 2005 Rules. No doubt, according to the proviso to sub-rule (4) Rule 24 a promotee is entitled to count ad hoc service provided he continuously worked till he is regularly promoted in a post within the promotee quota. No finding is recorded by the High Court on this very important prerequisite whether promotees appointed on ad hoc basis in 2004 continuously worked in a post within the promottee quota. On the other hand, it is clear from the Office Memorandum dated 21.10.2015 that only 2 posts were available in the promotee quota during 2003-2004. Those posts also were allotted to promotees who worked in Uttar Pradesh throughout their career and never joined in the State of Uttarakhand. Admittedly, they are seniors to promotees in the instant case. Therefore, the High Court was not right in giving the benefit of ad hoc service to the promotees on the basis that the proviso to Rule 24(4) of 2005 Rules comes into play. In view of the above, we do not think it necessary to adjudicate the dispute relating to the proviso to Rule 24 which exists in the English translation and does not find place in the Hindi copy. 32. Thus, the relevant parameters to decide the question of fixation of seniority qua direct recruits and promotes would require a determination of the following parametres: (i) whether the adhoc appointees hold the requisite qualifications for the posts to which they were appointed (ii) Whether the posts to which they were appointed were sanctioned (iii) Whether the procedure set out for their appointment was substantially, if not minutely followed and (iv) Whether their services in the posts appointed was continuous and uninterrupted. 33. Applying the admitted facts to the parametres crystallised above, point (i) stands answered in favour of the petitioners insofar as they admittedly possess SSLC qualification as on the date of adhoc appointment and are thus in compliance with the requirements at the relevant point in time. With regard to point (ii) the posts were sanctioned at the relevant point in time and it is for this reason that the Corporation had sought subsequent ratification of their appointments from the State. As regards point (iii), the procedure for appointment, as it stood then, was admittedly adhered to and with regard to point (iv), their periods of service are continuous and uninterrupted. 34. These Writ Petitions are allowed. The petitioners will be given all consequential benefits within a period of eight (8) weeks from today.
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