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Transfers: Kerala HC asks co-op bank to stick to norms

Our Bureau

Thiruvananthapuram , March 14

THE Kerala High Court has directed the Kerala State Cooperative Agricultural and Rural Development Bank (KSCARDB) to follow prescribed norms while ordering transfer of employees.

While disposing of a petition filed by the Kerala Cooperative Employees Union (CITU) and others, Mr Justice K. Balakrishnan Nair observed that deviations from established transfer policy should be restricted to the minimum and that too only in exigencies. The court also ordered that the rest of the complaints raised by the petitioners be settled as per provisions of the law in two months' time after granting a hearing to both parties.

The union had approached the court citing what it described as omissions and commissions of the respondent in the matter of transferring its employees. It argued that norms prepared in consultation with the concerned people were given the go-by and transfers wreaked with bias and ordered on extraneous considerations. The union prayed that the bank be directed to strictly follow the norms in future transfers.

On its part, the KSCARDB had submitted that transfers have been ordered in accordance with the prescribed norms. Any individual grievance on this count would be looked into if brought to the notice of the bank by filing appropriate representations. The bank emphatically denied allegations of bias and extraneous considerations having influenced the transfer orders.

After hearing both sides, the court directed that the Registrar of Cooperative Societies, Kerala, consider the representations filed by the petitioners in accordance with law, after hearing them as well as KSCARDB within two months.

Unions' demand: Reacting to the judgment, the Kerala Cooperative Employees Union (CITU) has requested the KSCARDB management to review what it described as indiscriminate and vindictive transfer orders issued during the last three years.

According to Mr P. S. Madhusoodanan, women constituted more than half of the staff at branches in district headquarters. The bank management has been trying to wield the threat of transfer as a weapon largely to stifle trade union activity. The unions have been carrying on protests against this attitude of the bank and even resorted to direct action on more than one occasion, Mr Madhusoodanan said.

More Stories on : Co-operatives | Courts/Legal Issues | Human Resources | Kerala

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Transfers: Kerala HC asks co-op bank to stick to norms

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