A Bench led by CJI P Sathasivam said the revised pay should be given to the employees with effect from November 11, 2011 when the Centre notified the recommendations of the Board.
The Supreme Court Friday ratified the constitution and recommendations of the Majithia Wage Board for journalists and non-journalists on their pay structure.
A Bench led by CJI P Sathasivam said the revised pay should be given to the employees with effect from November 11, 2011 when the Centre notified the recommendations of the Board. It said new pay structure would be given from April 2014 and the employer will have to pay arrears since 2011 within a year, in four equal installments.
“We hold that the recommendations are valid…we are fully satisfied that the procedure adopted by the Board is legitimate and no decision was taken unilaterally and arbitrarily,” said the Bench.
While upholding the validity of the Board, the court dismissed a bunch of petitions filed by various newspaper managements, challenging the validity of the Board’s constitution and recommendations.
The 6th (Majithia) Wage Board was constituted by the Labour Ministry in 2007. It announced an ad hoc interim relief of 30 per cent of basic pay with effect from January 2008. This was implemented by the industry. The Board submitted its final recommendations on December 31, 2010, which were notified by the Centre with certain modifications, a year later.
Under the Working Journalists and other Newspaper Employees (Conditions of Service) and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1955, the Union government through the ministry of labour in November 2011 notified recommendations increasing the salaries paid to all staff.
The latest Majithia wage board recommended that salaries be increased, in some cases to 200% of prevailing levels, causing an uproar from publishers and prompting many newspaper firms to challenge the implementation of the wage board in the Supreme Court.
The Delhi Union of Journalists (DUJ) welcomed the judgement. “It is a step in the right direction. We hope that the INS and all other news publications are helpful in implementing this judgement. We call for vigilance by all state unions for the same,” said S.K Pandey, general secretary of DUJ.
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