PATNA: The Patna high court on Wednesday rejected the state government’s LPA that accounts clerks, lower division clerks or junior accounts assistants recruited on compassionate grounds would not be given the payscale and grade pay on par with their regular counterparts.The division bench of Chief Justice Rajendra Menon and Justice Rajeev Ranjan Prasad upheld the single bench judgement by Justice Jyoti Saran on August 21 last year. While hearing a bunch of petitions that even the assistants recruited on compassionate grounds deserved payscale and grade pay equal to their counterparts recruited through other ways, Justice Saran had rapped the finance department for its decision in this regard.However, the division bench revoked the Rs5 lakh cost slapped by Justice Saran on the state government.All these clerical grade employees were posted in the state road construction department, rural works department, public health engineering department and building construction department.The respective departments had increased the payscale and grade pay of more than 300 junior accounts to Rs4000-Rs6000 and Rs2,400 respectively. The payscale upgrade was also confirmed by the finance department on March 23, 2015.Later, the finance department brought a resolution on July 7, 2016 that the department’s earlier order confirming upgradation of payscale and grade pay did not cover those appointed on compassionate grounds and it was applicable only to the direct recruits who had joined after regular selection process.After the finance department’s fresh resolution, the employees were again put in the payscale of Rs3,050-Rs4,590 with a grade pay of Rs1900.Not only the payscale and grade pay were degraded, but the finance department also issued order to recover excess salary and arrears paid to these employees after pay upgradation in 2015 with retrospective effect from 2006 and in accordance with the 6th Pay Commission.It was only then that the petitioners moved the high court in July 2017 against the finance department’s order.The single bench had restored the petitioners on their respective posts with the payscale attached with the order that any recovery made from the petitioners should be refunded to them within three months of production of the judgement’s copy.
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