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JurisdictionofCivilCourtinlabormatters

whennotbarred.
Jurisdictionofcivilcourtinlabormatterswhennotbarred.
Jurisdictionofacivilcourtinanindustrialdisputeisnotbarredincasethedisputerelatesto
violationoffundamentalrightsofaworkmanortheviolationofgenerallawofcontractis
involved. Jurisdictionofcivilcourtisrule,exclusionisexception.Thisverdicthas

beengivenbytheIndianApexCourtinCivilAppealNo.3280f2005Rajsthan
SRTCv.BalMukundBairwa,decidedon12/02/09.
TheSupremeCourtheldthateveninacasewherejurisdictionofacivil
courtissoughttobebarredunderastatute,thecivilcourtcanexerciseits
jurisdictioninrespectofsomemattersparticularlywhenthestatutory
authorityorTribunalactswithoutjurisdiction.
Thequestionastowhetherinacasewhereviolationisalleged
asregardscomplianceofprinciplesofnaturaljusticeeitheroncommon
lawprinciplesorintermsofthestatutoryRegulationsframedbythe
Corporation,whichisafundamentalrightintermsofArticle
14oftheConstitutionofIndia,acivilsuitwillbemaintainableornot,
hadnotbeentakenintoconsiderationinanyofthedecisionsofSupremecourt.
Adisputearisinginbetweenanemployerandemployeemayor
maynotbeanindustrialdispute.Thedisputemaybeinrelationtoor
arisingoutofafundamentalrightoftheemployee,orhisrightundera
ParliamentaryActandtheRegulationsframedthereunder,and/oraright
arisingundertheprovisionsoftheIndustrialDisputesActorthesister
lawsandmayrelatetosameorsimilarrightsordifferentrights,oreven
maybebasedoncommonlawrightorcontractualright.Thequestionin
regardtothejurisdictionofthecivilcourtmust,therefore,beaddressed
havingregardtothefactastowhichrightsorobligationsaresoughtto
be
enforcedforthepurposeofinvokingorexcludingthejurisdictionofa
civilcourt.
If an employee intends to enforce his constitutional rights or a
rightunder a statutory Regulation, the civil court will have the
necessaryjurisdictiontotryasuit.If,however,heclaimshis
right and corresponding obligations only in terms of the
provisionsoftheIndustrialDisputesActorthesisterlawsso
called,thecivilcourtwillhavenone.
TheSupremeCourtheldthatitwouldnotbe
correct to contend that only because the employee concerned is also a
workman within the meaning of the provisions of the 1947 Act or the
conditionsofhisserviceareotherwisegovernedbytheStandingOrder
certified under the 1946 Act ipso facto the Civil Court will have no
jurisdiction. This aspect of the matter has recently been considered by
this Court in Rajasthan State Road Transport Corporation & ors. vs.
MoharSingh[(2008)5SCC542].Thequestionastowhetherthecivil
court'sjurisdictionisbarredornotmustbedeterminedhavingregardto
thefactofeachcase.

If the infringement of Standing Order or other provisions of the

IndustrialDisputesActarealleged,thecivilcourt'sjurisdictionmaybe
heldtobebarredbutifthesuitisbasedontheviolationofprinciplesof
commonlaworconstitutionalprovisionsoronothergrounds,thecivil
court'sjurisdictionmaynotbeheldtobebarred.Ifnorightisclaimed
underaspecialstatuteintermswhereofthejurisdictionofthecivilcourt
isbarred,thecivilcourtwillhavejurisdiction.
Thus in the
courts view, "In
the event it is
found that the
action on the part
of
State
is
violative of the
constitutional
provisionsorthemandatoryrequirementsofastatuteorstatutoryrules,
the civil court would have the jurisdiction to direct reinstatement with
full
backwages."
Inacasewherenoenquiryhasbeenconducted,therewould
be
violation
of
the
statutory Regulation
as also the right of
equalityas
contained in Article 14 of the Constitution of India. In such
situation,a
civilsuitwillbemaintainableforthepurposeofdeclarationthatthe
terminationofserviceandtheconsequencesflowing
therefromwasillegal.
Thus this verdict of
theSupremeCourtof
India removes all
doubts
regarding
jurisdictionof
Civil court with regard
to disputes relating to
employment and it has
far reaching effect as
principles laid down in
thisdecision
will not be limited to
labor Laws only, but
will be applicable to
all branches of
employment Laws.
Now Lawyers and
litigants should not
hesitate in filing a
civil suit where the
grievances
are
covered by the above
judgement.

Dr.
V.N.
Tripathi,
Advocate,
Chamber
No.
34A
Allahabad
High
Court

Mob.
:
983952342Phone0532
2545245
Email
:
dr.vntripathi@yahoo.com

Source:JudgmentofSupremeCourtjudis