New Delhi: The Supreme Court today upheld the recommendations of Majithia Wage Board for journalists and non-journalists on their pay structure and directed that the revised salaries be granted to the employees.
A bench headed by Chief Justice P Sathasivam said that the revised pay structure should be given to the employees from November 11, 2011 when the Centre notified the recommendations of the Board.
It said that new pay structure would be given from April 2014 and the employer will have to pay arrears within a year in four instalments.
"We hold that the recommendations are valid," the bench said, adding that the Board had followed proper procedures in giving its recommendations and the allegations levelled against it and its constitution are not right.
The bench dismissed the pleas filed by various newspaper managements challenging the validity of the Board's constitution and its recommendations.
"We are fully satisfied that the procedure adopted by the Board is legitimate and no decision was taken unilaterally and arbitrarily and there is no irregularity in the procedure,” the bench said. The bench also said that the recommendations by the Board regarding variable pay is also within its jurisdiction.
"It cannot be held that wage structure is unreasonable," it said. The court in January this year had reserved its verdict on the pleas of the newspapers.
The 6th (Majithia) Wage Board was constituted by the Labour Ministry in 2007 despite strong reservations from the newspaper industry, and thereafter announced an adhoc interim relief of 30 per cent of basic pay with effect from January 2008.
This was implemented by the industry despite the heavy financial burden. The Wage Board submitted its final recommendations on December 31, 2010, which were notified by the Centre with certain modifications, a year later on November 11, 2011.