HYDERABAD:In a major relief to thousands of employees working in private establishments, a five-judge Constitutional bench of the Hyderabad High Court on Friday declared that every person, who is engaged in an establishment, irrespective of his/her status like trainee etc., is entitled to get the benefit under the Employees’ State Insurance (ESI).
The bench, comprising Acting Chief Justice Dilip B Bhosale, Justices K C Bhanu, S V Bhatt, A Shankar Narayana and Anis, delivered the verdict on a litigation which had first come up before the high court in 1998.
In Oct 1998, the Employees’ Insurance Court had passed orders declaring that trainees in RCC private limited were entitled to ESI benefits and the employer cannot deny the same to them. This was challenged in the high court. The case travelled from a single judge to the five-judge bench after it was heard by a division bench of two judges and then, by a full bench of three judges.
The five-judge bench, in its verdict, made it clear that even if a person is told that he is not likely to get a permanent job in the establishment after the training period, he would still be entitled to ESI benefits. Thus, contract employees, apprentices and such other persons, who are being denied the benefits, will now get ESI benefits which include medical reimbursement, maternity, disablement, unemployment allowances etc.