The city government has been ticked off by the Delhi High Court for making one of its senior bureaucrats work for it at Rs one a month for three months after his retirement.
While pulling up the government for making Delhi Khadi and Village Industries Board (DKVIB) Director J S Khatri work for it after his retirement at the ludicrous pay, a bench of justices B D Ahmed and V K Jain asked the government to pay him at the rate of 50 per cent of his last drawn basic salary.
"The government is expected to act fairly with regard to its employees and we do not find that such a conduct would be becoming on the part of the government," the bench said.
It pointed out that though Khatri had agreed to work as an officer on special duty (OSD) on the token payment only "till the government decides about his emoluments", the authorities failed to fix his wages and tried to pin him down to accept Rs one per month.
"Unfortunately, the government has not fixed any emolument and has tried to pin down Khatri to accept only Rs one per month," the bench said.
It held Khatri is entitled to receive 50 per cent of his last drawn basic salary along with dearness allowance as remuneration for the period of three months.
"Since the respondent (J S Khatri) has already received pension for the said three months, we feel that it would be appropriate if he is paid 50 per cent of his basic last drawn salary plus dearness allowance thereon, as applicable at that point of time, as his remuneration for the said period of three months," the bench said.
The court’s order came on an appeal by the DKVIB against an August 2011 order of the Central Administrative Tribunal, asking the government to properly compensate Khatri for three month of his post-retirement work as Board’s OSD.
The DKVIB had contended that Khatri was entitled to a token salary of Rs one per month only as he had agreed for the same.
The high court bench, however, rejected its plea saying that the February 19, 2002 order passed by the Board indicates that Khatri had agreed to accept a token payment of Rs one per month but this was only "till the government decides about his emoluments" by March 2002.
Pulling up the authorities for not acting fairly with Khatri, the bench said, "It (the February 2002 order) does not mean that Khatri had agreed that he would accept only the token payment of Rs one per month. He was definitely made to expect that he would be getting something more and that was left to the decision of the government.
The bench also upheld the tribunal’s order, imposing a cost of Rs 5,000 on the board.