HC stayed the order of Change of time from 8 AM to 10 AM in Jammu Division during Summer


Jammu, May 20: In a petition filed by Jammu Kashmir Ladakh All Departments Clerical Staff Association challenging seeking quashment of the order whereby respondents have changed the working time of Jammu Province from 8:00 AM to 10:00 AM. Justice Dhiraj Singh Thakur of J&K High Court Jammu Wing after hearing Sr. Adv BS Salathia with Advocates Anchit Sharma, Rakesh Manhas and Bhanu Singh Salathia for the petitioners whereas Sr. AAG Seema Shekhar appearing for the state, issued notice to State and Ors and granted one weeks' time to file objections and Court further ordered that In the meantime, subject to objections and till next date of hearing, the orders impugned are stayed.
During the course of hearing Sr. Adv BS Salthia submitted that Govt, vide order No. 10-GAD of 1985 dated 1.1.1985 prescribed the working hours of Govt. Offices in the State. For Jammu Division, the timings fixed for the period commencing from 1st of May to 30th of September was 8 AM to 1.30 P.M and from 1st of October to 30th of April was fixed at 10 AM to 4 PM. This appears to have been followed by the Divisional Commissioner, Jammu, who, by virtue of his order dated 17.4.2017 confirmed the same except to the extent that instead of 8 AM to 1.30 PM, the timing was fixed till 2 PM during the summer days and The cause of action is alleged to have accrued to the petitioners when the Chief Engineer, Electric Maintenance and RE Wing, Jammu vide his circular dated 4.5.2017 fixed working hours from 10 AM to 4 PM. A similair time Schedule was fixed by the Chief Conservator of Forests vide his communication dated 3.5.2017 and by the Director, Social Welfare Department, Jammu vide his order dated 9.5.2017. Even the Deputy Commissioner, Jammu vide his order dated 2.5.2017 appears to have followed a similar schedule.
Justice DS Thakur observed that the counsel for the petitioners urged in the present petition is that the said authorities i.e., the Chief Engineer, The Chief Conservator of Forests, the Director Social Welfare Department as also the Additional Deputy Commissioner, Jammu did not have any authority to tinker with the time schedule, which was fixed by the Govt, in the year 1985 and reiterated and followed by the Divisional Commissioner, Jammu as late as on 17.4.2017 and when the matter was taken up for consideration, Sr. AAG Seema Shekhar was asked to verify as to whether the Govt. Order dated 1.1.1985 had been withdrawn, rescinded or modified. The matter was taken up again after about an hour when she reported that she had failed to get through the concerned authorities on the subject.
Justice DS Thakur further observed that fixation of a time schedule by the Govt, for its employees is exclusively within the domain of the govt. It would be difficult for this court to interfere with such an executive order and say that the time schedule fixed from 8 AM to 2 PM is better than the time scheduled from 10 am to 4 pm. However, when the orders impugned issued by the authorities mentioned above are juxtaposed with the Govt. Order dated 1.1.1985, it was urged that the aforementioned authorities do not have independently any such right to fix the work schedule contrary to the one fixed by the Govt and issued notice to the respondents and ors and ordered that subject to objections and till next date of hearing, the orders impugned are stayed.
It is, however, made clear that it shall remain open to the Govt, to pass an order, fixing any schedule in supersession or modification of the earlier order passed by the Govt in the year 1985, if felt necessary. JNF

Share This Story

Comment On This Story


Photo Gallery

BSE Sensex
NSE Nifty