NEW DELHI: The Uttarakhand High Court on Tuesday cancelled last year’s judgment of the court providing maternity leave for a third pregnancy to women government employees. Paresh Tripathi, chief standing counsel for state government in the high court, said, “The honourable court cancelled the order providing maternity leave for third pregnancy.”
In July 2018, the state’s high court had struck down the rule barring maternity leave to women government servants for a third pregnancy terming it “unconstitutional”. The court had declared “proviso Second of the Fundamental Rule 153 of the U.P. Fundamental Rules” which were adopted by Uttarakhand as “ultra vires and unconstitutional” and the same was struck down. The directions of the court were passed on a petition filed by Urmila Masih, a state government employee who had applied for maternity leave of six months from June 20, 2015 to December 9, 2015.
Masih though, was not granted the leave stating that she was not eligible for the leave for hthird pregnancy according to these rules. The HC, in the order had observed that this rule was contrary to the Maternity Benefit Act, 1961, which does not prohibit grant of maternity leave to a female government servant even if she already has two children at the time of submission of application for the leave.