Chandigarh, September 22
More than six years after the retirement of Panjab University teachers at 60 was stayed, allowing them to continue till 65, a Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court today vacated the order. It means that the teachers will now retire at 60.
The Bench asserted it was noticed in the interim order dated August 22, 2016, that the academic sessions were going on. In the event of bulk retirement under the orders of a Single Judge, most of the teaching faculties would face acute shortage of teachers.
Relieving orders issued
As per the court orders, the relieving orders have been issued to all faculty members concerned on Thursday evening. — Prof YP Verma, Registrar, Panjab University
“It is to be noticed that the interim order continues to be in force for six years. All teachers retiring now are filing writ petitions before this court and getting interim orders to continue beyond the age of 60 to 65 by virtue of interim orders,” the Bench observed.
The Judges also observed that an affidavit filed by the university on July 18 showed that 61 teachers had superannuated at 65 on account of interim orders passed by the court. It was, as such, apparent that the writ petitioners/appellants had benefited and continued in service following the interim orders.
The Bench further added the currency of the litigation to protect the appellants had obviously run out, since they completed five years of extra service either on extension or on re-employment.
But the Bench was faced with further set of litigation getting tagged along with the present cases. The stay was, accordingly, vacated keeping in view the principles of law laid down by a three-Judge Bench of the Supreme Court in the case of ‘Asian Resurfacing of Road Agency P. Ltd. and another versus the Central Bureau of Investigation’.
The Bench added: “It is also to be kept in mind that the persons now being retiring can always be compensated by way of financial means in case their appeals are allowed. Whereas, if they continue to work under interim orders of the court, it practically amounts to allowing the appeals as they would continue to work up to the age of 65 under the interim orders”.
The Single Judge had earlier made it clear that Panjab University teaching staff was required to leave service at 60. The Judge had dismissed a bunch of writ petitions filed by professors and lecturers in Panjab University and its affiliated colleges for permitting them to continue till 65.