Supreme Court of India
The State Of Uttar Pradesh vs Uttam Singh on 3 August, 2021Author: Sanjay Kishan Kaul

Bench: Sanjay Kishan Kaul, Hrishikesh Roy



[arising out of SLP (C) NO.20650/2019]



UTTAM SINGH Respondent(s)


Leave granted.

1. The appellants seek to assail the judgment of the

Division Bench of the Allahabad High Court in terms whereof

the respondent before us has been granted the benefit of

compassionate appointment under the Uttar Pradesh

Recruitment of Dependants of Government Servants Dying in

Harness Rules, 1974 (hereinafter referred to as “the

Rules”) on account of demise of his father, who was working

with the appellants.

2. The father of the respondent had earlier waged a legal

battle against the appellant-Department arising out of his

endeavour to get his appointment post his selection for the

post of Tubewell Operator. The High Court in the impugned

order opined that the selection process of the father of
Signature Not Verified

Digitally signed by
Charanjeet kaur
Date: 2021.08.05
17:33:17 IST
respondent was unambiguous and against the regular

vacancy whereby he had submitted all the requisite

documents to the Irrigation Department. The case of the

respondent is that the appellants held up this issue over

six years and the actual appointment took place only on

29.01.2003. The respondent’s father continued to work and

draw emoluments for a period of 13 years equivalent to the

regular pay-scale till he unfortunately passed away on


3. The case of the respondent is also that in identical

matters, the appellants have appointed one Balram and one

Smt. Geeta Devi, whose father and husband respectively died

in harness, as Part Time Tubewell Operators and many other

candidates of whose record is not available. The

respondent argues that he was singled out in being denied

the benefit possibly on account of the earlier litigation

between the father of the respondent and the appellant-


4. The case of the appellants is that the father of the

respondent had not been regularized and merely grant of

equivalent benefits on the principle of ‘equal pay for

equal work’ would not make him regular employee and thus

the respondent is not entitled to the benefit of the Rules

for compassionate employment. In this behalf reference is

made to the judgment of this Court in Gen. Manager,

Uttaranchal Jal Sansthan vs Laxmi Devi & Ors. (2009) 7 SCC

205 stated to be dealing with the very Rule in question.

It will be useful to reproduce the relevant extract of the

Rules where Rule 2 (a)(iii) reads as under :

“ 2.Definitions-


(a) Government servant” means a
Government employed in connection
with the affairs of Uttar Pradesh

(i) xxxxx
(ii) Xxxxx
(iii) though not regularly appointment,
had put in three years
continuous service in regular
vacancy in such employment;

Explanation- “regularly appointed” means
appointed in accordance with the procedure
laid down for recruitment to the post of
service, as the case may be;”

5. Thus the respondent contends that since his father was

employed for more than 3 years in continuous service, he

was bound to be considered as a Government Servant and thus

the benefit should extend to the respondent. On the other

hand, relying upon the aforesaid judgment where the same

Rules have been analyzed, learned Senior counsel for the

appellants seeks to contend that this Court opined that a

person not regularly appointed but who had otherwise put in

3 years continuous service in a regular vacancy cannot mean

to imply that a Daily Wager would get the benefit of the

Rule. We may, however, note that the Court had opined on

the facts of that case holding that benefit would not

accrue to the respondent. The regular vacancy was held to

mean a vacancy which occurred in posts sanctioned by the

competent authority. The service of the deceased employee

had not actually been regularized though they have claimed

regularization. The fact that the deceased employee was

drawing salary in a regular pay-scale was held not to mean

that they are against a regular vacancy.

6. We may note an interesting aspect pointed out by the

learned counsel for the respondent, inter alia, in his

synopsis (as usual the appellants did not consider it

appropriate to assist this Court by filing a synopsis as

had been directed vide the last order, apart from the note

on the cause list!). The respondent has stated that during

the period of 13 years of the employment of the father of

the respondent, he was transferred from the Irrigation

Department to Panchayati Raj Department as ‘Gram Panchayat

Vikas Adhikari’ and vice versa, i.e, he was transferred 2

or 3 times by the appellants and was even appointed as a

polling officer by State Election Commission on 15.10.2015,

26.11.2015 and 03.12.2015. It is thus the submission that

there could not have been such inter-departmental transfers

and re-transfers if the father of the respondent was not

being considered as a regular employee. Not only that, it

is contended that there would possibly be no case where a

person is deployed under the Representation of People Act,

1951, who is not a Government employee. This is apart from

the fact that the respondent’s father was the operator of 2

Government tubewells which was stated to be equivalent to

the job of a regular tubewell operator i.e., a 9 a.m. to

5. P.m., which some times ran over more than 8 hours,

subject to the demand of farmers.

7. Learned counsel for the appellants however gives an

explanation by stating that these persons were originally

deployed as Gram Panchayat Vikas Adhikari, transferred and

re-transferred back and the challenge to the same was

repelled in U.P. Gram Panchayat Adhikari vs Daya Ram Saroj

& Ors., (2007) 2 SCC 138.

8. If we turn to the impugned order of the Division

Bench, the High Court has taken note of the Full Bench of

the Allahabad High Court which is in consonance with the

view propounded by this Court in the case of Gen. Manager,

Uttaranchal Jal Sansthan vs Laxmi Devi & Ors, (2009) 7 SCC

205 (supra)1. However, it noted the contention that though

the father of the respondent was termed as a Part Time

tubewell operator but he was always treated as a regular

employee. The Court took note of the rule referred to

aforesaid and the explanation given thereto which requires

that an appointment with procedure laid down for

recruitment to the post or the service. The order of

appointment in the case of the father of the respondent has

1 Pavan Kumar Yadav v. State of Uttar Pradesh & Ors., (2010) 18 ADJ 664

been found to be unambiguous in its terms in accordance

with norms after verification of all his certificates. A

complete process of selection was conducted by the

appellants as the employer. At the first instance,

appointment was denied to him on account of he not being a

resident of the command area of the tubewell concerned but

this ground was found unsustainable by the judicial view

taken by the High Court by an earlier order dated

29.01.2003 and consequently the father of the respondent

was appointed. It is in these given facts of the case that

it has been found that the benefit should be made available

to the respondent under the Rules. The facts have been

found sufficient by the High Court to come to the

conclusion that the appointment of the father of the

respondent was against a regular vacancy and that is why in

that background from the inception regular pay-scale was

allowed to him and he thus satisfied the parameters of the

Rules aforesaid.

9. We are in complete agreement with the view taken by

the High Court in the given factual scenario. We may say,

it appears that the appellants, for reasons best known to

them, endeavoured to deny the father of the respondent his

dues even though the appointment was through a proper

process. The High Court opined against the manner in which

the father of the respondent was denied employment. That

is the reason that from the very inception he was given the

benefits of a regular employee while designating him as a

Part Time tubewell operator. The High Court has found that

these facts show that the appointment was against the

regular vacancy though it continued to be termed as a ‘Part

Time’ appointment apart from the fact that his work hours

were of a regular employee entitling him to equal pay for

equal work.

10. We have also taken note of the fact that during his 13

long years of employment and before that having battled the

appellants for the period of 6 years to get his dues, the

father of the respondent was also transferred from one

department to the other, normally an aspect which would be

associated with a person who had a regular employment. The

most significant aspect is that had the father of the

respondent not been considered a regular appointee, there

would be no occasion for the Department to volunteer his

services to the State Election Commission to perform

election duties, which could have been done only by a

Government employee, as is specified under Section 159 of

the Representation of the People Act, 1950 (“Staff of

certain authorities to be made available for election


11. The present case is thus one which is peculiar in its

given factual scenario which we have discussed above and

thus for all practical purposes, it is a case of an

appointment against a regular vacancy. The respondent’s

father was treated as a regular employee by the aforesaid

conduct of the appellants even though he was labelled as a

Part Time tubewell operator.

12. We may like to further say that from the illustrations

given by the appellants, at least 2 persons, as noted

before, were employed in a similar scenario i.e., Balram

and Smt. Geeta Devi whose father and husband respectively

died in harness as Part Time tubewell operators. It is

quite obvious that there is an discrimination against the

respondent possibly arising from the previous litigation

between the appellants and the deceased father of the

respondent. There is no satisfactory explanation for the

same and we cannot permit the appellant-Department to

harass the respondent in this manner.

13. We are thus of the opinion that the course adopted by

the Division Bench of the High Court is in accordance with

law and the impugned order does not call for any


14. The appeal is dismissed with costs throughout.

15. The necessary orders be issued in the case of the

respondent within one month from date the order.



AUGUST 03, 2021.


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