THE DOUBLE Bench of the Madhya Pradesh High Court here has quashed the Madhya Pradesh State Electricity Board (MPSEB) order to promote 53 people already having been promoted five years back.
As per MPSEB Junior Engineer and Madhya Pradesh Vidyut Mandal Patropadhi Abiyanta Sangh regional general secretary GK Vaishnav, diploma holding engineers are appointed as junior engineers. Appointment Rule -III stipulates that junior engineer serving a minimum period of seven yrs be promoted to the post of assistant engineer.
As there are fewer posts than number of deserving employees the board in 1999 brought a time bound scheme. The scheme stipulated that on completion of nine year in service a junior engineer be promoted to assistant engineer pay scale without necessarily having a promotion.
It also stipulated that if a junior engineer is not promoted until 15 years the time boundation will provide for designation of assistant engineer. It was also stated that whenever there is a vacancy they would be provided charge of AE.
On May 7, 1999 junior engineers who had completed 15-year in service numbering 490 were given designation of assistant engineer under the time bound scheme. The appointments were done in September 1999.
As per clause (111) of this scheme, orders were issued in this regard in October 2000 and charge was given to 110 such officials.
The Jabalpur headquarter, however, in its orders issued in this regard in December 2005 issued promotion orders for these 110 of which 53 had already been promoted to the post. Out of total 79 posts 66 were from the general category and 13 from SC/ST. This discrepancy meant that those who had been promoted would loose their seniority of five years due to fresh reappointment on the same post.
A case was filed in the single Bench of the Indore High Court before Justice Maheshwari which came up for hearing on February 26, 2006.
It was found that MPSEB order was defective and therefore, was nullified. The court also asked for a fresh order for placing the remaining who had got a promotion for the first time.
The board in secret filed a case in the double bench without even giving the other party whiff of their action. In the absence of MPSEB notice, the court on December 15,2006 gave a stay only till next hearing. An application for stay vacation, urgent hearing and relieve order was issued on the same day on the double bench presided by Justice Kulshreshtha and Justice Seth.
In its hearing on January 15, 2007 the double bench upheld the single bench decision and asked for drafting of a promotion guideline. The decision entails creation of 53 AE posts.
Vaishnav alleged that despite junior engineers completing 25 to 27 years of service they are not being promoted to the post of AE, while the MPSEB by creating new power distribution companies, has advertised for induction to 100 AE posts.
Presently about a 1,000 junior engineers have completed the 15 year criteria and are eligible for promotion to rank.