Seniority Calculation of Ad Hoc Appointees

The case delves into the legal intricacies surrounding the calculation of seniority for ad hoc appointees, focusing on whether services rendered prior to regularisation should be considered. The court’s analysis sheds light on the application of relevant rules and past precedents to resolve the seniority dispute. Stay tuned to unravel the complexities of seniority determination in the legal realm.


  • Various writ petitions were filed challenging the final seniority list dated 14.12.2001.
  • A submission was made on behalf of Narendra Kumar Tripathi to count his seniority from 12.06.1985 instead of 18.01.1983 when he was appointed on work charge basis.
  • Multiple writ petitioners before the High Court were downgraded in the seniority list dated 22.03.2016 compared to the list dated 14.12.2001.
  • Narendra Kumar Tripathi initially worked on work charge basis from 18.01.1983 before getting an ad hoc appointment on 12.06.1985.
  • Conflicts between Division Benches led to the referral of the writ petitions to a Full Bench.
  • Appellants filed a writ petition seeking to set aside the seniority list dated 22.03.2016 and restore the earlier list dated 14.12.2001.
  • The issue in question was whether services rendered on an ad hoc basis before regularisation should be considered for determining seniority.
  • A Division Bench of the High Court of Judicature at Allahabad dismissed a writ petition regarding the counting of services rendered on an ad hoc basis for determining seniority.
  • A two Judge Bench of the Court allowed an appeal and held that ad hoc services should be counted for seniority from the date of initial appointment.
  • The Full Bench of the High Court later dismissed petitions stating that ad hoc services should not be counted for seniority after regularisation.
  • Special Leave Petitions were filed and re-numbered as Civil Appeal Nos. 3348/2015 and 3349/2015, directing the State to redetermine seniority within six months.
  • The Court clarified that the re-determination of seniority would not disrupt the holding of posts by any incumbent and only pension benefits and other entitlements would be given on a notional basis.

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  • The dispute in the appeals is related to determining the seniority of Assistant Engineers in the Rural Engineering Department.
  • The common question in these appeals is whether services rendered in an ad hoc capacity prior to regularization should be counted for seniority or only from the date of regularization as per relevant rules.
  • The High Courts relied on the Supreme Court decision in Secretary, Minor Irrigation Department v. Narendra Kumar Tripathi, holding that services rendered in ad hoc positions should also be counted for seniority from the date of initial appointment.
  • The decision in the Narendra Kumar Tripathi case will be discussed further.

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  • The appellants, original writ petitioners, argue that their seniority has been pushed down due to the redetermination of seniority as per Narendra Kumar Tripathi (supra).
  • They state that their services should only be counted from the date of regularisation as per the 1979 Rules/1989 Rules and not from their initial appointments as ad hoc.
  • The appellants claim that their services as ad hoc appointees should not be considered for seniority purposes.
  • They argue that the decision in Narendra Kumar Tripathi (supra) did not consider earlier binding decisions of the court regarding the seniority of ad hoc appointees.
  • The State of Uttar Pradesh and other contesting respondents argue in favor of considering the services rendered by ad hoc appointees prior to regularisation for seniority purposes.
  • Various court decisions have been cited by both sides to support their arguments.
  • Other learned Advocates representing the contesting respondents support the submissions made by Shri Manoj Swarup
  • Pushing down in the seniority list is necessary due to re-determination of seniority by counting services of ad hoc appointees from their initial appointments
  • Posts held by the appellants shall not be disturbed

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  • The appointments in the year 1989 after being recommended by the Selection Committee under the 1979 Rules are considered substantive appointments, determining seniority from 1989.
  • Ad hoc appointees benefited from the 1979 Rules and must abide by its conditions.
  • Rule 7 of the 1979 Rules stipulates that seniority starts from the date of appointment after selection according to the Rules.
  • Substantive appointments under the 1979 Rules involve appointment based on recommendation by Selection Committee and subsequent regularisation.
  • Service Rules of 1993 and Seniority Rules of 1991 clarify the definition of substantive appointment and seniority calculation.
  • Decisions in previous cases like Narendra Kumar Tripathi and Direct Recruit Class II Engg. Officers’ Assn. were considered, but found not applicable to the present case.
  • The regularisation of ad hoc appointees and subsequent seniority determination were governed by the 1979 Rules.
  • Seniority should be counted from the date of regularisation in 1989 and not from the initial appointment in 1985 for the ad hoc appointees.
  • The relevant parts from the 1979 Rules and subsequent regulations were analyzed to determine seniority and appointment procedures.
  • Ad hoc appointees initially appointed in 1985 on a temporary basis as Assistant Engineers in the Rural Engineering Service Department.
  • Conditions of their ad hoc appointment specified no right to claim seniority in the future based on the said order of appointment.
  • The services of the ad hoc appointees were regularized under the 1979 Rules within four years of their initial ad hoc appointment.
  • Decision in the case of Narendra Kumar Tripathi ruled that services rendered by ad hoc appointees prior to regularisation were to be counted for seniority.
  • The Constitution Bench held that the two Judge Bench judgment in the case of Dr. R.K. Tandon did not lay down the correct law and was in conflict with a larger Bench judgment.
  • The decision stated that ad hoc appointees in the State of Uttarakhand not entitled to the benefit of service from 1988 to 2004 for seniority purposes after regularization.
  • Reference made to the cases of Santosh Kumar and Archana Shukla where the interpretation of the Rules 1979 favored the regularisation of services of ad hoc appointees.
  • Ad-hoc appointments made before January 1, 1977, and continuing as of the commencement of the rules are eligible for regularization.
  • Candidates must possess the necessary qualifications for regular appointment at the time of their ad-hoc appointment.
  • After completing three years of continuous service, the candidate can be considered for regular appointment in permanent or temporary vacancies based on their record and suitability.
  • Reservations for candidates belonging to Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, Backward classes, and other categories must be made in accordance with the government’s order during recruitment.
  • A Selection Committee must be constituted by the appointing authority for the regularization process, and consultation with the Commission is not necessary.
  • An eligibility list of candidates in order of seniority based on their appointment order must be prepared by the appointing authority and submitted to the Selection Committee for consideration.
  • Character rolls and relevant records of the candidates must also be provided to the Selection Committee for review.
  • Ad hoc appointees appointed in 1985 without consultation with UPSC and no recommendation by UPSC.
  • Regularisation of services based on 1979 Rules and selection by Selection Committee.
  • Substantive appointments considered from 1989 after regularisation/appointment by Governor.
  • Seniority to be counted only from date of regularisation in 1989, not from initial appointment in 1985.
  • Decision in Rudra Kumar Sain case not applicable to the current case.


  • The re-determination of seniority and the revised seniority list dated 22.03.2016 is quashed and set aside.
  • The final seniority list dated 14.12.2001 is restored, considering services from 14.12.1989 onward for ad hoc appointees.
  • Impugned judgments and orders dated 19.09.2016 and 13.03.2018 by the High Court of Judicature at Allahabad are quashed.
  • Judgments and orders dated 03.07.2018 and 30.08.2018 by the High Court of Uttarakhand are also quashed and set aside.


Case Number: C.A. No.-010788-010788 / 2016

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