Thursday, February 18, 2021

Calcutta High Court: Removal from Job solely on ground of disability is violative of RPWD Act 2016

Court:                   Calcuta High Court

Bench:                  Justice Ravi Krishan Kapur 

Case Title:           Dr. Shishir Kumar Biswas Vs. State of West Bengal & Ors.

Case No. :            W.P.A. 16042 of 2018

Date of Order:   18.02.2021


Case brief:

Calcutta High Court has ruled that removing a disabled person from a job solely on the ground of his physical disability is a violation of the Rights of PwD (Persons with Disabilities) Act of 2016 and has set aside an order removing a blind Professor from the position of Head of the Bengali Department by the Haringhata Mahavidyalaya, primarily on the ground of his physical disability.

The petitioner, Dr. Shishir Kumar Biswas, a blind professor at Haringhata Mahavidyalaya was removed from the post of Head of Bengali Department due to his physical disability. The court observed that the act was a violation of three provisions of the Rights of PwD Act, particularly Section 20 of the  Act, which states that there cannot be any sort of discrimination against a person with any kind of disability in a matter that is related to his employment. The petitioner stated that the act of the concerned college was a clear violation of his constitutional rights and is not only illegal but also against the morals and principles of natural justice.

The court noted that the memo dated 31st July, 2017, whereby the petitioner was removed, is in direct violation and contravention of the provisions of the Rights of Persons With Disabilities Act, 2016.

"On a perusal of the impugned Memo it is evident that save and except physical disability on the ground of eye blindness, there is no other ground alleged in the impugned Memo whereby the petitioner has been removed as Departmental Head from the Department of Bengali in the concerned college.

I find that impugned Memo is also in direct violation and contravention of the 3 provisions of the Rights of Persons With Disabilities Act, 2016 and particularly violative of the provisions of Section 20 of the said Act," the Bench said.

Section 20 provides that no Government establishment shall discriminate against any person with disability in any matter relating to employment. Every Government establishment shall provide reasonable accommodation and appropriate barrier free and conducive environment to employees with disability.

The court observed that there is nothing on record to support the impugned actions taken by the Managing Committee of the college. It thus set aside the impugned memo and directed the Respondent-authorities to take appropriate steps in accordance with law.

Read the embedded judgement below:

Thursday, February 4, 2021

Kerala HC- Double Bench dismissed the appeal against Single Bench order that directed the aided private educational institutes to implement reservation under Disabilities Act.

Court: Kerala High Court 

Bench: Mr. Justice A.M. Shaffique and Mr. Justice Gopinath P. 

Case No. : WA.No.1237 OF 2020 (against the Judgement in WP(C) 4753/2020(T) OF Hight Court of Kerala Dated 26/8/2020)   (Heard with WA.1238/2020, WA.1239/2020, WA.1242/2020, WA.131/2021)

Case Title (lead Case) : Secretary, NSS College Central Committee  Vs.  Renjith  J.V.

Date of Judgement: 04 Feb 2021


Please refer to our earlier post titled Kerala HC: Aided Private Education Institutions are 'State' and need to implement reservation for persons with disabilities, dated 27 Aug 2022

The Respondent in the WP 4753 of 2020 had gone in appeal in the present case before the double bench, however the Bench dismissed the appeal finding no merits and that the contentions raised were similarly to many other cases already decided by the Supreme court of India.

The main contention urged on behalf of the Consortium of Catholic School Managements in Kerala was that Ext.P8 order cannot be enforced since no posts had been identified to be filled up in terms of Sections 32 and 33 of the 1995 Act and Sections 33 and 34 of the 2016 Act.

It was also contended that the posts which had been notified are relating to Government departments, Government schools and colleges and do not have any relation to the creation of posts with reference to aided schools and colleges. And, thefore, it was argued that unless the posts in such aided schools and colleges are notified in terms of the statutory provision, incorporating Exts. P3 to P7 Government Orders will not suffice.

The bench, however, did not find any of these arguments sustainable in light of catena of previoous judgements of the hon'ble Supreme Court, particularly, Justice Sunanda Bhandare Foundation v. Union of India [(2014) 14 SCC 383)]Government of India through Secretary and Another v. Ravi Prakash Gupta [(2010) 7 SCC 626], Rajeev Kumar Gupta v. Union of India and Others [(2016) 13 SCC 153]Indra Sawhney v. Union of India [1992Suppl (3) SCC 217], and therefore, dismissed the appeal.  

Read the detailed Judgement below: