Justices R. Subbiah and C. Saravanan passed the order on a petition preferred by the Madras High Court and Madurai Bench Officers and Staff Association which wanted even arrears of higher pay to be paid to its members.

TAMIL NADU
Committee to consider increasing HC staff salary with retrospective effect from 2017
Mohamed Imranullah S.
CHENNAI 08 AUGUST 2020 01:15 IST
UPDATED: 08 AUGUST 2020 01:16 IST

The Madras High Court on Friday ordered that a decision on increasing the salary of its staff with retrospective effect from 2017 can be taken by a committee comprising judges and top government officials.

Justices R. Subbiah and C. Saravanan passed the order on a petition preferred by the Madras High Court and Madurai Bench Officers and Staff Association which wanted even arrears of higher pay to be paid to its members.

The judges had on July 9 allowed a writ petition filed by the association and set aside a decision taken by the State government on January 29, 2019 to reject former Chief Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul’s 2017 recommendation to increase the salaries.

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The Division Bench rejected the State’s contention that the salaries of over 3,800 Madras High Court staff could not be raised on a par with that of the Delhi High Court and Supreme Court staff because the latter were paid by the Centre which had enormous resources on hand.

The court also refused to accept government’s claim that increase in salaries of Madras High Court staff would have a cascading effect and that the Secretariat staff and other government employees might also end up demanding a similar increase.

Holding that that the grounds raised by the State could not be a reason to deny fair wages, the Bench ordered constitution of a committee comprising High Court judges and government officials to compare the nature of duties performed by Madras High Court and Delhi High Court staff.

The new pay scales could be fixed after such a comparison, it had said. Fearing that the revised wages might come into effect only prospectively after the committee’s deliberations, the staff association had moved a miscellaneous petition now demanding the revision retrospectively.

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