The Supreme court said that the Labour Court cannot overturn the management’s decision on the basis of mere Hypothesis.

By- Rhytham Jain

The supreme court of India observed that the Labour courts cannot overturn the decisions and judgments of the management on “ipse dixit” and its verdict should not be based on mere hypothesis. Supreme court of India set aside the decision of Labour court which changed or just overturned the decision of management to terminate the services of one of its employees, which concerted itself into a court of appeal. Supreme court bench of Justice Ajay and Justice Abhay S Oka observed that the jurisdiction of labor court must be judiciously exercised and cannot be exercised capriciously under section 11A of the Industrial Disputes act 1947.

This section deals with the powers of labor courts to give appropriate relief in case of discharge of workmen. The observations were made in the context of the Tribunal’s order reinstating an employee of the Bank while reversing the orders of his termination from his post after a disciplinary inquiry in his matter. The bench observed that the tribunal completely overlooked and exceeded its jurisdiction as it interfered with the findings of the management.  Further, the high court also submitted a manifest error that upholds the orders of the tribunal. The bench has found that it has converted itself into a court of appeal as an appellate authority. The court informed that the tribunal tested it on broad principles of charge to be proved beyond any reasonable doubt. The decision of the Labour Court was not based on a mere hypothesis. It should not overturn the decision of management on an ipse dixit basis. It may exercise its jurisdiction judiciously it should scrutinize and analyze the evidence but what is important is how it does so.

The bench made the decision or gave this decision while delivering its judgment in an appeal filed against the order of Allahabad high court where it upheld the reinstatement of an employee of a standard charted bank. A departmental inquiry was made against the employee where the charges were proved against him. The inquiry committee also confirmed the inquiry officers finding and punished him with the penalty of dismissing him from services. 

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