By LE Desk
Hyderabad, March 28: Issuing Government Orders (GOs) would not mean enforcement of court orders. Making this observation, the Andhra Pradesh High Court on Friday instructed the State government to pay minimum time scale wages and arrears to sweepers working in zilla parishad schools by the end of April.
Hearing a contempt of court petition over non-implementation of the HC orders over payment of minimum time scale wages to government school sweepers, Justice M.S. Ramachandra Rao declined to grant two months of time sought by the government to enforce the court orders, The Hindu reported.
One Kasim and 45 others working as sweepers in government schools moved the HC in March 2018 seeking minimum time scale of wages. The HC passed interim orders instructing the government to pay minimum time scale (₹13,000 a month) to them. With the government not complying with the HC order even after three years, the petitioners filed a contempt of court petition.
During the previous hearing, the judge directed the officials responsible to appear personally in the matter. Panchayat Raj and Rural Development principal secretary Vikas Raj appeared before the judge on Friday. The officer explained to the court that the government had already issued a GO on March 22 in connection with the court direction.
Justice Rao observed that issuing GOs did not mean enforcement of the court directions. Only payment of minimum time scale to the sweepers would constitute compliance of the court direction, the judge said.
The judge noted that salaries of the sweepers would not be high and the government was coming out with lame excuses over compliance with the court directions on the matter. Instead of making an oral statement, the official should file an affidavit assuring implementation of the court order, the judge said.
Referring to the submission of government counsel that officer Vikas Raj was transferred to General Administration Directorate, the judge said the court was not concerned with the details of the transfers of officials. He gave exemption to the officials from personal appearance in the matter.