Jafferjce v. Ceylon Mercantile Union
1968 Present: H. N. G. Fernando, C.J., and Abeyesundere, i.
A. I. JAFFERJEE and others, Appellants, and THE CEYLONMERCANTILE UNION, Respondent
S. C. 419-422f67—Applications for Mandates in the nature ofWrits of Certiorari and Prohibition
Industrial dispute—Dismissal of a workman by his employer —Reference for arbit ratio n —Legality of arbitrator’s power to pronounce upon the rightfulness or wrongfulnessof the dismissal—Industrial Disputes Act, s. 4—Certiorari. •
Where a dispute that has been referred for arbitration under section 4 of theIndustrial Disputes Act conoerns the question whether the dismissal or proposeddismissal of a workman by his employer is justified, the arbitrator’s disposalof it in the manner provided for by the Industrial Disputes Act is legal anddoes not constitute the exercise of judicial power.
Applications for writs of Certiorari and Prohibition.
S. Sharvananda., with A. Paranavitane, for tho Petitioners.
N.Satyendra, for the 1st Respondent.
(1891) 2 Q. B. 326 at 335, 336.* (1947) 48 N. L. R. 66.
* (196?) 67 N. L. R. 191.
H. N. G. FERNANDO, C.J.—Jaffcrjce v. Ceylon Mercantile Union 115
January 24,1068. H. N. G. Fkanando, CJV—
In these four applications counsel for the Petitioners has arguedthat in each case the reference of the particular dispute for arbitrationunder Section 4 of the Industrial Disputes Act is ultra vires. In eachcase the dispute concerns the question whether the dismissal or proposeddismissal of certain workmen by their employer is justified. Theargument of counsel is that since the arbitrator may be pronouncingupon tho rightfulness or wrongfulness of the dismissals the arbitratorwill be exercising judicial power.
In the case of United Engineers Workers Limited v. Devanayagam1the Privy Council considered a case where an application had been madeunder Part IV A of the Industrial Disputes Act to a Labour Tribunalfor relief. The relief described in the Act for which an applicant mayapply is relief in respect of the termination of the services of a workman.The decision of the Privy Council is to the effect that the entertainmentof such an application, and its disposal in the manner provided for bythe Act, did not constitute the exercise of judicial power. It would appearthat the ratio decidendi of the Privy Council decision is that the powerscommitted by the Act to Industrial Courts and arbitrators are perfectlylegal and that the powers committed to Labour Tribunals by Part IV Aof the Act are no different from similar powers which may be exercisedby Industrial Courts or arbitrators. It seems, therefore, that the pointof law which counsel for the petitioners now urges is answered by thedecision of the Privy Council. The applications are refused, with costsfixed at Rs. 52*50 in each application.
Abeyesundere, J.—I agree. ,
A. I. JAFFERJEE and others, Appellants and THE CEYLON MERCANTILE UNION, Respon