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Maharashtra High Court upholds the termination and rejects compensation appeals.

Bombay HC Denies Disabled CRPF Employee's Plea For Promotion

The Bombay High Court agreed that firing an employee who is frequently absent from work is a reasonable decision. The HC denied an employee’s petition challenging an Industrial Court decision not to intervene in the company’s / employer’s decision to terminate employment. The Industrial Court upheld the company’s decision to fire the employee, dismissing the employee’s petition, and the High Court agreed.

In this case, Justice Milind N Jadhav stated that the company’s termination of the petitioner’s services was justified and not considered a “unfair labour practise.”

The petitioner’s request for additional compensation was correctly denied by the Industrial Court, as the denial of back wages was deemed legally unsound. The court exercised its revisional jurisdiction correctly by dismissing the petitioner’s complaint.

The petitioner, a technical officer with the respondent company since 1988, was charged with unauthorised absences in 2001. He had not taken leave, nor had he given any indication of his absences.

Records show that she was absent on a regular basis in 1998 (44.5 days), 1999 (63.5 days), and 2000 (144 days). The petitioner had declined back wages for this period despite admitting significant income from a milk business during that time. Because the employee refused back wages, the Labour Court awarded a lump sum compensation of Rs. 60,000. However, the Industrial Court handled this during revision proceedings and challenged it because the petitioner could not be labelled as a victim at all. After all, despite his chronic absences, he was making a good living from his side hustle.

The Industrial Court correctly overturned the Labour Court’s decision, citing the petitioner’s refusal to accept back wages as not a sympathetic point in his favour, given that he had earned approximately Rs 2.5 lakhs per year while not working. The Labour Court’s decision to allow the payment of a lump sum compensation amount was deemed illegal and arbitrary.

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