Service Tribunal’s powers are not unlimited, notes Supreme Court

The Nation  |  Jul 27, 2021

ISLAMABAD - The Supreme Court of Pakistan voided the order of the Punjab Service Tribunal (PST) and allowed the appeal filed by the Punjab government against Khadim Hussain Abbasi an employee of Specialized Healthcare and Medical Education Department, Lahore and restored the penalty of compulsory retirement from service imposed upon the Respondent (Khadim) by the departmental authorities on March 09, 2017.

A two-member SC bench comprising Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed and Justice Ijaz Ul Ahsan had reserved the decision on an appeal filed by the Special Secretary, Specialized Healthcare and Medical Education Department, Lahore against the judgment of Punjab Service Tribunal at Bahawalpur passed on September 18, 2020. Khadim was serving as Chief Technician, District Blood Unit, Sheikh Zayed Hospital, Rahim Yar Khan. He was facing departmental proceeding under Punjab Employees Efficiency, Discipline and Accountability Act, 2006 (PEEDA Act, 2006) on the allegations of misconduct, illegal sale of blood, absence from duty without leave and malpractices. 

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The 15-page judgment authored by Justice Ijaz Ul Ahsan stated that a copy of this judgment be transmitted to Chairman, Punjab Service Tribunal, Lahore for its circulation amongst all members of the Tribunal for their perusal and adherence to the principles of law enunciated and reiterated herein. “We therefore find that the Tribunal has not only exceeded its jurisdiction but exercised the same in a mariner which is in complete violation of the settled principles of law on the subject.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court Monday announced a decision in a service matter and stated that the court was supposed to interpret the law and apply it in letter and spirit and it could not go beyond the law as courts lack jurisdiction to provide remedies which were otherwise not in the law or the Constitution by inventing remedies of their own and termed it a dangerous trend which threatened to weaken the very fabric of constitutionalism and rule of law and, this must be discouraged. 

18 injured as passenger bus overturns in Sheikhupura The High Court could not alter, amend or renegotiate the terms and conditions of the appointment orders of the Respondents for the simple reason that it did not have jurisdiction to do so.

A three-member SC bench comprising Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed, Justice Ijaz Ul Ahsan and Justice Munib Akhtar had reserved a decision over a petition filed by the government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa through Secretary Agriculture, Livestock and Cooperative Department Peshawar against Saeed-ul-Hassan and others. The provincial government had challenged the judgments of different benches of the Peshawar High Court the Respondents had, through their Constitutional Petitions, challenged the decisions of the appellants to terminate the services of the respondents from their respective posts. 

Their Petitions were allowed, and the Appellants were ordered to reinstate and regularize the Respondents against their respective posts.

Delegations of Pakistan, Saudi Arabia discuss bilateral ties The 15-page judgment authored by Justice Ijaz Ul Ahsan stated that “the high court in all the appeals had applied the principle of similar treatment of similarly placed persons and had found the Respondents eligible for Regularization. It was settled principle of law that each case turned on its own facts and circumstances. When the record was clearly suggestive of the fact that the Respondents could not be regularized, and there were valid and sustainable reasons to do so, the principle of similar treatment of similarly placed employees could not blindly and indiscriminately circumvent the record to regularize those employees who were otherwise not entitled to regularization.

 

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