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Calcutta HC Issues Contempt Notice To State Chief Secretary & Other Authorities For Non-Compliance With Order On Pension Scheme Implementation

Aaratrika Bhaumik
29 April 2022 3:41 PM GMT
Calcutta HC Issues Contempt Notice To State Chief Secretary & Other Authorities For Non-Compliance With Order On Pension Scheme Implementation
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The Calcutta High Court on Friday issued notices to the Chief Secretary, Principal Secretary of the Transport Department and the Principal Secretary of the Finance Department of the Government of West Bengal in a petition seeking initiation of civil contempt in a matter pertaining to the implementation of a Pension Scheme for employees of the South Bengal State Transport...

The Calcutta High Court on Friday issued notices to the Chief Secretary, Principal Secretary of the Transport Department and the Principal Secretary of the Finance Department of the Government of West Bengal in a petition seeking initiation of civil contempt in a matter pertaining to the implementation of a Pension Scheme for employees of the South Bengal State Transport Corporation (SBSTC). 

Justice Arindam Mukherjee ordered, 

"I direct issuance of Rule against Rajesh Kumar Sinha, the Principal Secretary, Transport Department, Government of West Bengal, Paribahan Bhawan, 12, R.N. Mukherjee Road, Kolkata-700001; H.K. Dwivedi, the Chief Secretary, Government of West Bengal, having his office at "NABANNA", 325, Sarat Chatterjee Road, P.O. Shibpur, Howrah – 711102; and, Dr. Manoj Pant, the Principal Secretary, Finance Department, Government of West Bengal, having his office at "NABANNA", 325, Sarat Chatterjee Road, P.O. Shibpur, Howrah – 711102."

In the instant case, the Court vide order dated September 12, 2021 had ordered the State authorities to consider a representation made by sixty retired employees of South Bengal State Transport Corporation (SBSTC) seeking implementation of the Pension Scheme at par with other State Transport Undertakings. It had been alleged that the issue of implementation of Pension Scheme in 'SBSTC' has been pending for consideration before the Government of West Bengal since August, 2019.

The Court noted that the order dated September 12, 2021 had been served on the alleged contemnors on September 24, 2021. It was also noted that a contempt notice was issued on January 18, 2022 and that it had been received by the State authorities on January 19, 2022. 

It was also taken into consideration that the matter had been adjourned on April 22, 2022 since the State authorities had failed to tender appearance despite being served notice. 

Highlighting the repeated non-appearance of the State authorities in the matter, the Court observed, 

"A direction was also given on 22nd April, 2022 to serve a fresh notice to the alleged contemnors/respondents no.1, 2 and 3. The applicants/petitioners have served a notice dated 22nd April, 2022 to the alleged contemnors/respondents no.1, 2 and 3 which has been duly received on 25th April, 2022 and 26th April, 2022. An affidavit of service filed in this regard by the applicants/petitioners is taken on record. The alleged contemnors/respondents no.1, 2 and 3 remain unrepresented despite service even today. The version of the alleged contemnors/respondents no.1, 2 and 3 is not available to the Court despite the contempt petition being adjourned on 22nd April, 2022."

The matter is slated to be heard next on May 20

Case Title: Sanat Kumar Ghosh & Ors. v. Rajesh Kumar Sinha & Ors.

Case Citation: 2022 LiveLaw (Cal) 151

Click Here To Read/Download Order 


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