Labour Law Cases Review of Recent Courts' Judgments

 
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Brief facts in the following case law are that a permanent workman designated as Pedicurist filed grievance petition to Sindh Labour Court No. 5 that her employment was terminated on account of her trade union activities vide order dated March 11, 2002. Labour Court dismissed her petition in 2006 maintaining that unfair labour practice could not be adjudicated by Labour Court and reason given for termination was valid reason. Labour Appellate Tribunal allowed petition on both counts in 2010 and petitioner was ordered to be reinstated in service with full back-benefits. Sindh LAT order was challenged in High Court Constitutional appeal by the employer from which various following issues were raised and decided by the High Court in 2012.

If employee may not be a "workman" under IRA,2008 and could not maintain grievance petition, he could still be a "workman" under Standing Orders Ordinance, 1968 hence entitled to maintain grievance petition.

Designated as Pedicurist in the health club, the employee was a permanent workman. Employer objected to her petition stating that termination of her employment has not been in consequence of an industrial dispute and therefore, she is not a workman under Industrial Relations Act, 2008 and could not maintain grievance petition. This was rejected by the Labour Appellate Tribunal and stated that employee was "workman" as defined in S.2(i) of Industrial and Commercial Employment (Standing Orders) Ordinance, 1968. Even if the employee was not "workman" for the purpose of definition as given in Industrial Relations Act, 2008, employee was entitled to maintain grievance petition under Standing Order 12(3) of the Industrial and Commercial Employment (Standing Orders) Ordinance, 1968 provided for maintenance of grievance petition. [HC(Sindh): Pakistan Services Limited through Major(R) Zia Ahmed Jan and another vs Sindh Labour Appellate Tribunal and another ; 2014 PLC 77].

(b) Industrial and Commercial Employment (Standing Orders) Ord. 1968-- S. 2(i)--"Workman"---Determination of status based on nature of duties

Employee was a "workman" based on nature of duties performed.

Employee was not employed in supervisory capacity, she was working in the health club, performing various duties which she mentioned in her affidavit in evidence. Employee by stating her duties, and with no specific denial by the employer, had successfully established the case that her duties were manual and clerical in nature. Employee in circumstances, was workman for the purpose of Industrial and Commercial Employment (Standing Orders) Ordinance, 1968. Designation was not material, but the work actually being done by the employee, was relevant for deciding the issue of "workman". [HC(Sindh): Pakistan Services Limited through Major(R) Zia Ahmed Jan and another vs Sindh Labour Appellate Tribunal and another ; 2014 PLC 77]

(c) Industrial Relations Act (IV of 2008)--- S. 54(3)---Appeal to Labour Appellate Tribunal---Limitation

Workman have a 30-day period to file appeal under S.54(3) of Industrial Relations Act, 2008.

Certified copy of impugned appellate order passed by Labour Appellate Tribunal was delivered to appellant/employee, 25 days after the passing of the order; and appeal was filed within 25 days from delivery of copy of the order. Period of 30 days having been prescribed under S.54(3) of Industrial Relations Act, 2008 for filing appeal, appeal of employee, was not barred by time as alleged by the employer. [HC(Sindh): Pakistan Services Limited through Major(R) Zia Ahmed Jan and another vs Sindh Labour Appellate Tribunal and another; 2014PLC 77].

(d) Industrial Relations Act (IV of 2008)--- S. 41---Grievance notice

Employer contended grievance notice was given under a different law rather than IRA hence invalid but reply to it makes it "hyper technical" andamp; therefore rejected.

Counsel for employer...

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