Supreme Court Judgement: Govt woman employee can get uninterrupted two-year leave for child care Title Coram Date of Judgement KAKALI GHOSH
Date of Judgement
Vs. CHIEF SECY. A & N ADMINISTRATION & ORS.
JYOTI MUKHOPADHAYA, V. GOPALA GOWDA
ANDAMAN & NICOBAR
ADMINISTRATION AND ORS.
J U D G M E N T
Sudhansu Jyoti Mukhopadhaya, J.
5. Aggrieved appellant then moved before the Tribunal in O.A. No.47/A&N/2012 which allowed the application by order dated 30th April,2012 with following observation:-
“12. Thus O.A. is allowed. Respondents are accordingly directed to act strictly in accordance with DOPT O.M. dated 11.9.2008 as amended/clarified on 29.9.2008 and 18.11.2008, granting her CCL for the due period. No costs.”
6. The order passed by the Tribunal was challenged by respondents before the Calcutta High Court which by impugned judgment and order dated 18th September, 2012 while observing that leave cannot be claimed as a right, held as follows:
“It is evident from the provisions of sub r.(3) of r.43-C of the rules that CCL can be granted only according to the conditions mentioned in the sub-rule, and that one of the conditions is that CCL shall not be granted for more than three spells in a calendar year. It means that CCL is not to be granted for a continuous period, but only in spells.
From the provisions of sub r.(3) of r.43-C of the rules it is also evident that a spell of CCL can be for as less as 16 days. This means that in a given case a person, though eligible to take CCL for a maximum period of 730 days, can be granted CCL in three spells in a calendar year for as less as 48 days.”
The High Court further observed:
“Whether an eligible person should be granted CCL at all, and, if so, for what period, are questions to be decided by the competent authority; for the person is to work in the interest of public service, and ignoring public service exigencies that must prevail over private exigencies no leave can be granted.”
8. Per contra, according to respondents, Rule 43-C does not permit uninterrupted CCL for 730 days as held by the High Court.
to two children, relevant portion of which reads as follows:
“Child Care Leave for 730 days.
Women employees having minor children may be granted Child Care Leave by an authority competent to grant leave, for a maximum period of two years (i.e. 730 days) during their entire service for taking care of up to two children, whether for rearing or to look after any of their needs like examination, sickness, etc. Child Care Leave shall not be admissible if the child is eighteen years of age or older. During the period of such leave, the women employees shall be paid leave salary equal to the pay drawn immediately before proceeding on leave. It may be availed of in more than one spell. Child Care Leave shall not be debited against the leave account. Child Care Leave may also be allowed for the third year as leave not due (without production of medical certificate). It may be combined with leave of the kind due and admissible.”
“(2) Clarifications:-The question as to whether child care leave would be admissible for the third child below the age of 18 years and the procedure for grant of child care leave have been under consideration in this Department, and it has now been decided as follows:-
i) Child Care Leave shall be admissible for two eldest surviving children only.ii) The leave account for child care leave shall be maintained in the pro forma enclosed, and it shall be kept along with the Service Book of the Government Servant concerned.”
“43-C. Child Care Leave1) A women Government servant having minor children below the age of eighteen years and who has no earned leave at her credit, may be granted child care leave by an authority competent to grant leave, for a maximum period of two years, i.e. 730 days during the entire service for taking care of up to two children, whether for rearing or to look after any of their needs like examination, sickness, etc.
2) During the period of child care leave, she shall be paid leave salary equal to the pay drawn immediately before proceeding on leave.3) Child care leave may be combined with leave of any other kind.4) Notwithstanding the requirement of production of medical certificate contained in sub-rule (1) of Rule 30 or sub-rule (1) of Rule 31, leave of the kind due and admissible (including commuted leave not exceeding 60 days and leave not due) up to a maximum of one year, if applied for, be granted in continuation with child care leave granted under sub-rule (1).5) Child care leave may be availed of in more than one spell.6) Child care leave shall not be debited against the leave account.”
“7. Right to leave (1) Leave cannot be claimed as of right.
(2) When the exigencies of public service so require, leave of any kind may be refused or revoked by the authority competent to grant it, but it shall not be open to that authority to alter the kind of leave due and applied for except at the written request of the Government servant.”
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