SRINAGAR Observing Non-Functional (Monetary) Scheme (NFS) was discriminatory, the high court has directed government not to act upon a notification regarding it in respect of the members of the Jammu and Kashmir Administrative Service.
The scheme appears to be discriminatory in nature and thereto is hit by Article 14 of the Constitution of India, a bench of Justice M K Hanjura said. Therefore , it is directed that subject to objections and till next date of listing before the Bench, the impugned Non-Functions (Monetary) scheme as notified vide SRO 198 o 2008 dated 25-4-2008, shall not be acted upon, the court said and asked the government to file objections to a petition, challenging the notification issued SRO-198 of 2018 dated 25 April this year, within four weeks.
The court was hearing a petition filed by Itrat Hussain Rafiqi and others, appointed to the Kashmir Administrative Service in 2005 and 2008 respectively. In their plea, they said that the final seniority list of officers of the J&K Administrative Service was notified on 24 June 2011 and the order became the subject matter of the petitions which are sub-judice in Court. On account of the pendency of these petitions and the orders passed by the Court, the officers could not be placed in the seniority scale. They said government took a policy decision and notified the Non-functional (Monetary) Scheme .
By notifying the effective date of application of the scheme from 1 January this year, they said, the government has lost sight of the fact that the petitioners have suffered on account of the dispute with regard to their seniority.
Although they have the eligibility as prescribed in the Rules of 2008, the petitioners said they have not been placed in the Selection Grade. They stated that the beneficiaries of the scheme and the petitioners under law constitute a single class as all the KAS Officers have faced stagnation due to the pending seniority dispute. It appears that by giving effect to the scheme from 01.01.2018, the petitioners have been subjected to invidious discrimination and excluded from the benefit of the scheme notwithstanding the fact that they are similarly circumstanced with other officers to whom the benefit has been accorded, the court observed, adding, Similarly circumstanced have to be treated in privileges conferred. The scheme appears to be discriminatory is hit by Article 14 of the Constitution of India.
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