The Supreme Court has referred to a larger bench the issue whether the service rendered as daily-wager before being regularized and given the status of a regular Government servant, can be reckoned, so as to invoke the provisions of the Payment of Gratuity Act, 1972 after the age of superannuation and retirement as State Government employee?
The bench was hearing an appeal against a Chhattisgarh High Court judgment which had taken the view that the provisions of the 1972 Act have no application to a person who holds a post under the State Government and is governed by any other Act and in particular, the Chhattisgarh Civil Services (Pension) Rules, 1976.
While dealing with the contention raised by the appellant , the bench noticed that an earlier decision, a coordinate Bench (in Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd., Jammu vs. Teja Singh) had opined that a dailyrated Mazdoor who has been regularized but did not have qualifying service in terms of the service rules for extending retiral benefits to him, would not be entitled for payment of gratuity under the 1972 Act.
The Court observed that section 2(e) of the 1972 Act, in no uncertain terms provides that if a person holds a post under the Central Government or a State Government and is governed by any other Act or by any rules providing for payment of gratuity, the provisions of the 1972 Act will have no application.
Having noticed the conflict, the bench refer the issue to be considered by a larger Bench of three Judges.