Case : Bangalore water supply v/s A. Rajappa & Others
Appellant : Bangalore water supply
Respondent : A. Rajappa & Others
Ref : AIR 1978 SC 553
Subject : Case is based on section 2(j) of Industrial Dispute Act 1947 – Definition Of Industry.
- A. Rajappa – employee of Bangalore water supply & sewerage board.
- A labour dispute arose between – board and employee, which could not be solved peacefully.
- Dispute – All Employee were fined by Bangalore water supply board for misconduct, Fine was too heavy and not reasonable. This is the main reason why employees were opposing against this decision.
- A Rajappa & Others filled an application under sec 33(2) of Industrial Dispute Act 1947 . They said that the fine which was imposed on them was violation of natural justice.
- In Defense board said, ” we are industry u/s 2(j) of IDA 1947 & therefore labour court has no jurisdiction to hear this case.
Labour Court Response in this behalf :
- Objection raised by the Board was overruled.
- Then Board filled two writ petitions to Karnataka High Court ( Under Article 226 Of Indian Constitution )
High Court In Response :
- Dismissed petition & stated; That this industry comes under 2(j) of IDA 1947.
- Then Board under article 136 of Indian Constitution filled another petition to Supreme Court.
Supreme Court In Response :
- Matter tried upon by 7 judges bench, in which Chief Justice Shri Beg was one of them.
- Before this case; Many case heard by SC on this issue, but no amendment made in definition of industry.
- This case judgement gave a wider & more comprehensive import to word “INDUSTRY”.
- Hon’ble SC held that ; meaning of industry to be considered in wider term not in narrow meaning.
Now Questions Before Supreme Court :
The SC considered whether these are “Industry” or not –
1. Without profit motive establishment.
2. Clubs, lawyers chambers, CA Office, Doctor Clinic,
3. Charitable Trust, Institutions,
4. Non profit organization,
5. University/college/school/research institutes.
SC laid out some principles to determine whether an enterprise/establishment is an industry or not :
1. Any activity will come under definition of Industry if he fulfills the triple test.
- It is systematic activity,
- There is cooperation between employer & employee,
- There is production/distribution of goods, or rendering of services which satisfy human wants and wishes (Not religious/Spiritual Wants or wishes
2. Profit motive is immaterial :
3. Philanthropy or charitable nature is also immaterial
Exceptions to term “Industry” are :
- Small clubs, gurukuls, ashrams, school, colleges, research institute, which has non employee characters,
- Single doctor, lawyer (Because No Organized Labour)
- Free legal and medical services,
- Causal Activities (They are not systemetic)
- Sovereign Functions _ Maintenance of law & order, Legislative & Judicial Function.
on the basis of afore said interpretations, SC refused to accept the narrow meaning of definition of Industry & has recognized the wider definition of Industry.
- Appeal was dismissed.
- SC – Refused matter to 9 Judge bench
as a result, later in 1982, parliament amended the definition of “Industry” under section 2 of Industrial Dispute Act 1947.