Principle Of Equal Pay For Equal Work Cannot Be Applied Merely On Basis Of Designation: Supreme Court

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Principle Of Equal Pay For Equal Work Cannot Be Applied Merely On Basis Of Designation

Case: Union of India vs. Manoj Kumar

Coram: Coram: Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Hrishikesh Roy

Case No: CA 913-914 OF 2021

Court Observation: “Yet to some extent, a separate recommendation was made qua Secretariat Organizations and non-Secretariat Organizations. Once these recommendations are separately made, to direct absolute parity would be to make the separate recommendations qua non-Secretariat Organizations otiose. If one may say, there would have been no requirement to make these separate recommendations if everyone was to be treated on parity on every aspect”

“it may not be possible or even justified to grant complete parity because the hierarchy and career progression will need to be different taking in view the functional considerations and relativities across the board.”

“We are fortified in the view we are seeking to adopt in interpreting the aforesaid paragraphs of the Pay Commission by the observations in Union of India v. Tarit Ranjan Das, where it was opined that the principle of equal pay for equal work cannot be applied merely on basis of designation. While dealing with the 5th Pay Commission recommendations with respect to functional requirements, it was held that there was no question of any equivalence on that basis. The said case dealt with Stenographers of the Geological Survey of India. While observing that as a general statement it was correct to state that the basic nature of work of a Stenographer remained by and large the same whether they were working for an officer in the Secretariat or for an officer in a subordinate office; it was held that Courts ought not to interfere if the Commission itself had considered all aspects and after due consideration opined that absolute equality ought not to be given”

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