Holding that the role of a daughter in supporting her family did not change after marriage, the Bombay High Court has described as "unfair labour practice" a 1994 Maharashtra Government rule which allowed only unmarried daughters eligible for employment on compassionate ground in the case of her parent's premature retirement.
"It is impossible to accept in this day and age that assuming a woman gets married she will cut off her ties with the family she is born in and will leave it to suffer the vagaries of life in penury," Justice Nishita Mhatre observed in a significant judgement delivered last week.
The court was hearing an appeal filed by Maharashtra Government against an order of Industrial court which termed as illegal the termination of Medha Parke, a Pune resident, who had secured employment in keeping with the Government policy framed under Maharashtra Civil Services (pension) Rules after her father retired prematurely on medical ground.
"In my opinion, the rule which discriminates against women is arbitrary and, therefore, it cannot be said that the termination of service of Parke was legal. An unfair labour practise has been established," Justice Mhatre observed.
"It is necessary for the Government in this case to establish on evidence that Parke, after having secured employment, was no longer connected with the family that she was born into and that the family was living without her financial support," the judge opined.
"The State has instead chosen to dismiss Parke without holding an enquiry and thereby committed an unfair labour practise," the judge said in the order.