The group of 10,323 teachers, who were unlawfully retrenched, is gearing up to file an appeal with the Supreme Court against the Tripura High Court’s judgment on September 26. The high court had previously dismissed objections raised against the alleged illegal termination process, prompting the affected teachers to seek justice at a higher legal platform.
Representatives of the teachers’ group, based in Delhi, announced that senior lawyers have been engaged, and preparations for filing the case are now complete.
Advocate Amrit Lal Saha, who represented the teachers, highlighted the substantial merit of the case. He emphasized that the termination process violated the prescribed procedure outlined in Article 311 of the Constitution for dismissing employees from service. Furthermore, the fundamental rights enshrined in Articles 14 and 21 of the Constitution, pertaining to equality before the law and the right to life and livelihood, respectively, were allegedly breached by the state government during the mass retrenchment of 10,323 teachers.
Under Article 21, which states that no person shall be deprived of their life and personal liberty except according to the established procedure of the law, the retrenched teachers argued that the state government did not follow due procedure in their dismissals. Additionally, the state government’s blanket dismissal order was seen as a violation of Article 14, which guarantees the right to equality before the law. Advocate Amrit Lal Saha pointed out that while thousands of employees and teachers continue to serve in accordance with the recruitment rules of 2003, the selective retrenchment of 10,323 teachers was unwarranted and discriminatory.
Emphasizing the principle of natural justice, Saha referred to the well-known case of Maneka Gandhi versus the Union of India in 1977. In this case, the Supreme Court asserted that no person could be subjected to punitive treatment without being given an opportunity for a fair hearing.
While refraining from commenting on the high court’s September 26 order, Saha expressed optimism about a fair hearing in the Supreme Court. He specifically mentioned the crucial Para-127 of the parent judgment of CJ Deepak Kumar Gupta and Justice Swapan Chandra Das of May 7, 2014, noting that this paragraph has not been adequately interpreted in earlier proceedings.
As the case awaits its turn in the Supreme Court, the affected teachers and their legal representatives remain hopeful that justice will prevail in their fight against the alleged unjust dismissals.