Workmen of Hindustan Steels v.  Hindustan Steel Ltd.

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Reasonable opportunity should be given to a specific to protect him or her in command to fulfil the standards of natural justice. In this case there is a question raised whether removal of an employee from his manager’s end without any reasonable excuse should not be justified. Natural justice needs an individual to get a reasonable and impartial hearing before a verdict is made that will harmfully affect them. The three main wants of natural justice that must be encountered in these conditions are: proper notice, reasonable hearing and no partiality. Sometimes, all three of these notions are grouped together as the right to a fair verdict. 

The notice needed means that the people embroidered by the consequence must be told about the important problems and be given enough data to be able to subsidize in the choice-making system. The need for fair hearing means that the people affected are provided a rational method to show their opinion on that topic and to reply to the evidence accessible by others, and that the choice-producer will genuinely care what each individual has expressed when making the conclusion. The Supreme Court in Baker made it obvious that this situation-grounded method to fairness means that works that do not meet the standard of management fairness in one conclusion-making context may be satisfactory in another. With regards to help with this aim, the court set out five features to be considered:

The viewpoint of the decision, constitutional scheme, the status of the conclusion to the individual sufferer, the genuine hopes of the parties, and the optimal process made by the choice-maker. Since the judgement in Baker case, I have taken note of five factors which are applied in many situations where the justice of an administrative verdict has been challenged in the courts. We can see that the present case[1] also mentions proper documentation about how an individual is removed from his job due to certain circumstances. The rule of natural justice is followed by all the people of a civilised State with the Supreme position. In the beginning days of reasonable work, at the time when industrial areas were governed with a harsh and inflexible law to hire and fire, the Supreme court gave its judgement with the direction of time-limit and founding of social, justice and economic legal protection for the workmen.

Facts of the Case

Hindustan Steel Ltd. ‘Employer for short) dismissed Manas Kumar Mukherjee (Workman for short) without having any investigation and without giving any occasion to the workman to examine or right the assertion of misbehaviour flattened against him and in violation of principles of natural justice. The employer tried to bear the work by raising its controls under Standing Order 32 of the specialized Standing Orders of the Hindustan Steel Ltd. Standing Order 32 reads as under: Special Method in certain situations. It is the period for the 1st respondent-public sector responsibility to recast Standing Order 32, and to take it in tune with the viewpoint of the Constitution worsening which the vires of the said standing Order would have to be inspected in an appropriate happening. The Court further dismissed the petition and said no costs to be paid.

Issue of the Case 

The Issue Raised in the following case is that:  

  • Whether the Petition filed by the Workmen of Hindustan Steel Ltd. is maintainable in the Apex Court or not.
  • Whether the termination of the job of Shri Manas Kumar Mukherjee is valid or not. To what relief, if any is, be entitled.
  • Whether Such Standing Order is violative of the principles of natural Justice.
  • Whether the explanations were relevant to the fire from the Job or was whether is merely an excuse or a pretence to give out with the investigation and to levy the penalty.

Arguments by Petitioner 

The appellant works as an assistant in the employ of Respondent responsibility was uninvolved from provision on the ground that it was no longer expedient to employ him. The management dispensed with the departmental enquiry, after looking into the secret report of one of their officers that the appellant had disobeyed with the wife of an employee and that a complaint in admiration thereof had been blocked with the police.

The failure to look into them as they were not given to the plaintiff in the course of enquiry to meet or explain the same. We reflect that they are irrelevant at this stage. Once, we hold that there was the defence for rule with the investigation, the burden of consequence of dismissal without disciplinary enquiry as considered by Section Order 31 would be unreasonable.

For this reason, the appellant shall make a request as prescribed by Section 89 read with Rule 21A to the suitable consultant, who would consider conceding of release to the appellant under Section 89 of the Income-tax Act[2]

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Arguments by Respondent 

Respondent prescribed a detailed procedure for trade with cases of misbehaviour in the Standing Order 31 of the Public Sector Undertaking. For imposing a huge fine, the owner had to entice up a charge sheet and give a chance to the felonious workman to produce himself within 7 days. If the accusations were contradicted, an investigation had to be held by an officer to be selected by the organization and in such an investigation rational opportunity of explaining and protecting the suspected misconduct had to be given to the workman. Suspension of the delinquent workman pending investigation was also allowed. At the end of the investigation, if the custodies was demonstrated, and it was provisionally decided to impose a huge fine, the criminal workman would have enough money for a further reasonable chance to represent why the penalty should not be obligatory on him. 

Summary of Judgement

The judgment given in the court’s above-mentioned case stated that the quantity of Rs. 1 50,000 fixed to be compensated to the appellant by the respondent includes back wages and all other payments permissible to him from time to time from the year 1970 till the conclusion of 1984. The quantity shall be laid over from time to time. If because of the swelling sum expense as ordered herein, the defendant is obligated to reduce Income- tax as instructed by Section 192 of the Income-tax Act, 1961[3], the petitioner shall be permitted to release under Section 89 of the Income Tax Act, 1961. For this determination, the appellant shall make a submission as required by Section 89 of the Income Tax Act, 1961 read with Rule 21A to the suitable consultant, who would consider conceding relief to the appellant under Section 89 of the Income Tax Act, 1961. The event on this behalf shall be disposed of within a time limit of six months. The petition is disposed of in these orders with no direction as to cost. Standing Order 32 provided for a unique process in case of a workman was imprisoned for a criminal felony in a court of law or where the General Manager was gratified for motives to be logged in writing that it was inappropriate or against the welfares of the safety of other members to continue to employ that workers, i.e., the workman could be uninvolved or dismissed from service without subsequent the procedure laid down in Standing Order No. 31.

With the situation to the Industrial Tribunal, the Tribunal apprehended that as the employer should be allotted with the disciplinary investigation in the exercise of the authority stated by Standing Order 32, it could not be said that the discharge from the job was not acceptable and that if there were allegations of wrongdoing, the manager has enough authority to pass an order of elimination from service without any reasonable excuse of not conducting the investigation and given the rules contained in Standing Order 32, and banned the reference.  The explanations for provision with the investigation do not spell out the landscape of the wrongdoing assumed to have been committed by the appellant and what encouraged the General Manager to dispense with the investigation. There was no justification for administration with the investigation, the burden of the penalty of release without the disciplinary investigation as considered by Standing Order 31 is unlawful and invalid.  The respondent shall serve remembrance and cancel the order dated August 24, 1970, removing the appellant from the job and returning him to his job. On the same day, the appellant shall tender a letter of resignation of his post, which the respondent shall acknowledge. Where teaching casts dishonour or interrupts livelihood, before making the instruction, natural justice principles in a reasonable prospect to present in this case and invalidate the adverse evidence must have full production. 

Even the Constitution, which permits provision with the review under Article 311 (2)[4]protection, is announced that the worried authority must stipulate reasons for its choice why it was not reasonably practicable to hold the investigation. A Standing Order No. 32, which confers such uninformed, unanalysed and radical power to terminate an employee by just stating that it is inadvisable or against the interest of security to continue to employ the workman is offensive of the basis of an obligation of natural justice, as the General Manager can impose consequence of such severe nature as to affect the maintenance and put a stigma on the quality of the workman without recording reasons why the disciplinary investigation is distributed with and, what was the misconduct unproven against the employee.


The Supreme Court in its verdict said that it cannot investigate competence or plenty of explanations. But if the explanation ex-facie is not pertinent to the issue namely of dispensing with investigation the Court in a suit for a writ of certiorari can always scrutinize details ex-facie and if they are not relevant to the subject record a finding that the pre-necessary for exercise of authority having not been satisfied, the exercise of authority was bad when is without jurisdiction. If the court is gratified that the explanations which energized the concerned authority to record a result that it was not reasonably feasible to hold the investigation, obviously the gratification would be a finish to distribute with the investigation and the court may disapprove the same. The mandatory task is to list the descriptions for the fulfilment of the power that it was not reasonably practicable to hold such an investigation. Once the explanation is specified and are undoubtedly issue to restricted judicial assessment as in a writ for certiorari, the court would scrutinize whether the details were relevant to the issue to distribute with the investigation and to levy the penalty. Let it not be elapsed by what is placed down by a catena of conclusions that where an order casts a stigma or disturbs maintenance before making the order, morals of natural justice namely a rational chance to present-day situation and disprove the contrary indication must have full performance. Thus, even where the Constitution authorizes supply with the investigation, a safeguard is introduced that the concerned authority must specify reasons for its decision why it was not reasonably practicable to hold the investigation.

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Looking into Section Order 32, it nowhere requires the General Manager to provide good details for delivery with the investigation as stated by Section Order 31. On the contrary, the language of Section Order 32 instructs requirements upon the General Manager to give the greatest descriptions for his satisfaction why it was inappropriate or against the concentration of the safety of the State to continue to give jobs to the people. Explanations for provision with the investigation and details for not continuing service of the workman stand exclusively separately from each other. A Standing Order which discusses such arbitrary, uncanalised and drastic power to dismiss an employee by merely stating that it is inexpedient or against the interest of the security to remain to hire the workman are violative of the elementary requirement of natural justice in as much as that the General Manager can levy consequence of such a extreme attitude as to mark the living and put a dishonour on the appeal of the workman without copy reasons why disciplinary investigation is dispensed with and what was the misbehaviour alleged against the employee. 

It is the period of time for such a public segment taking responsibility as Hindustan Steel Ltd to reorganize Section Order 32 and to bring it in tune with the history of the Constitution failing which it being other power and therefore, a State under Article 12 in a suitable proceeding, the vires of Section Order 32 will have to be inspected. It is not essential to do so in the present case because even on the standings of Section Order 32, the order made by the General Manager is not accepted.

The view we are taking gets some provision from a decision of this Court. In a slightly diverse situation, this Court in L. Michael & Anr. v. M/s Johnston Pumps India Ltd.[5] observed that discharge suggestions on the reason of loss of confidence when questioned before a court of law on the reason that it was a colourable use of authority or it is a mala fide work, the employer must disclose that he has acted in good intention and for good and rational reasons. Where a disciplinary investigation is dispensed with on the specious plea that it was not reasonably practicable to hold one and a penalty if release or elimination from deal is imposed, if the same is challenged on the ground that it was a colourable exercise of authority or Mala Fide Act, the same condition would come and the employer must satisfy the Court the good and objective reasons showing both evidence of mismanagement and legal and objective reasons for providing with the investigation. 


In my estimation, when the conclusion of the manager to distribute with investigation is interrogated, the employer must be in a place to content the Court that place, of the investigation will be either security-creative or may cause such irreparable and irretrievable harm which in the realities and situations of the situation need not be grieved. This minimum obligation cannot and should not be fixed with to regulator widespread voluntary expert and to sentinel against the powered authority to execute such a heavy verdict as rejection of livelihood and forming a disgrace without giving the least prospect to the employee to negate the accusation and even without letting him know what is his misbehaviour. In this atmosphere, the employer has to demonstrate that the gunfire was based on a specific attitude and not opposition toward a collection or section of people. You just essential to do it the correct way – succeeding established processes for cooperating your anxieties and documenting every step you take literally the way. 

[1] Workmen of Hindustan Steels v.  Hindustan Steel Ltd., 1985 SCR (2) 485.

[2] Income-tax Act, 1961 , s. 89.

[3] The Income-tax Act, 1961, s.192.

[4] The constitution of India, Article 311 (2).

[5] L. Michael & Anr. v. M/s Johnston Pumps India Ltd, 1975 AIR 661.