Providing relief to multipurpose health workers ( MPHWs) working on contract under the National Health Mission (NHM), the Punjab and Haryana high court has directed the UT administration to grant them age relaxation during recruitment against regular posts.
Justice Mahesh Grover on Wednesday ordered the UT administration to grant age relaxation to the MPHWs at par with such relaxation granted by it in the past to its own employees, for the purpose of considering their candidature for recruitment to 12 regular posts of MPHWs in its antimalaria wing.
The bench brushed aside the argument of the administration that petitioners were not its employees, but of the National Health Mission.The bench observed that it would be very harsh on such employees, who were employed on contract basis for past seven or eight years under the NHM, to be now told that they would not be entitled to age relaxation for considering their candidature for regular appointment.
It added, “UT administration had been granting such age relaxation to its employees in the past for purpose of considering their eligibility for permanent recruitment. Thus, the petitioners, and other similarly situated contractual MPHWs, whose tenure as such contractual workers ( whose tenure expired on Se ptember 30, 2014), were thus, also to be given same treatment in the matter of relaxation of age for appointment to permanent posts”. UT administration has also been asked to give preference to the petitioners and other similarly situated persons, whenever in future some posts of MPHWs are required to be filled up on contract basis.
It is pertinent to note that 35 MPHWs, whose tenure under NHM was expiring on September 30, had filed the instant civil writ petition.
Chandigarh administration had advertised 12 posts of MPHWs in anti-malaria wing of its health department, but petitioners were not granted age relaxation, in lieu of their services put in under NHM, on contract basis.