Orissa: HC directs state government to hike daily allowance of Home Guards to Rs. 500
29 February 2020: Orissa High Court directed the State government to pay the Home Guards a wage at par with police constables. It also directed the government to pay the interim daily allowance of Rs. 500 to Home Guards with retrospective effect from 1 January 2020. The order will benefit 17,757 Home Guards employed in the State.
Supreme Court: Gender Parity finally in the Indian Army
17 February 2020: In a landmark order, the Supreme Court has upheld the right of short service commissioned women officers to be entitled to permanent commission in the Indian Army. It also said that there could not be an absolute bar for considering women officers for command positions. This was in response to the government’s petition challenging a Delhi High Court order of 2010 to grant permanent commission to women officers at par with their male counterparts.
The SC has categorically rejected the arguments of the Central government that was based on physiological limitations of women and prevailing social norms, including family obligations. The court made it clear that casting aspersions on the ability of women officers was an insult to both women and the Indian Army.
But more measures like opening the doors of the National Defence Academy, which is still reserved only for boys post-schooling, and adding women to the rank and file (in the same way police has woman constables) are also needed to ensure women are adequately represented in the armed forces.
Supreme Court: No reservation in promotion for State Government employees
7 February 2020: The Supreme Court has held that states are not bound to provide reservation in appointments and there is no fundamental right to claim reservation in promotions. However, the order also stated that if a state wishes to exercise its discretion and make such provision, the state can collect quantifiable data showing ‘inadequacy of representation’ of that section in public services.
The Supreme Court set aside the order of the Uttarakhand High Court of 15 November 2019 directing the state government to collate data on SC/ST employees and then “consider whether or not it should provide reservation in promotion in their favour”. The state government of Uttarakhand in 2012 had decided to fill up its positions without providing reservation in promotion.
Maharashtra: Industrial Court directs Pune Civic body to pay dues to Contract Workers
7 February 2020: The Pune Industrial Court has directed the Pune Municipal Corporation to immediately pay all dues to the 230 contract workers who have been working for over a decade and were denied all facilities as per law. The Court has also issued notices to municipal commissioner and the contractors to appear before the court before 20 February. The union of the contract workers, Maharashtra Kamgar Manch, claims that the workers are paid between Rs. 6000 and 9000 when the minimum wage for unskilled workers in Rs. 11,500 in the state.
Supreme Court: Delhi Government to pay working graduates at least Rs. 19,572 per month
1 February 2020: Supreme Court has directed the government of Delhi to implement the notification dated 3 March 2017 which stated that the minimum wage for graduates should be at least Rs. 19,572.