Equal Pay for Equal Work : 10 Limitations or Qualifications to the Applicability of the Doctrine

The Supreme Court has accepted following limitations or qualifications to the applicability of the doctrine of ‘equal pay for equal work’:-

1. The doctrine of ‘equal pay for equal work’ is not an abstract doctrine. 

2. The principle of ‘equal pay for equal work’ has no mechanical application in every case. 

3. The very fact that the person has not gone through the process of recruitment may itself, in certain cases, makes a difference. 



4. The application of the principle of ‘equal pay for equal work’ requires consideration of various dimensions of a given job. 

5. Thus normally the applicability of this principle must be left to be evaluated and determined by an expert body. These are not matters where a writ court can lightly interfere. 



6. Granting pay scales is a purely executive function and hence the court should not interfere with the same. It may have a cascading effect creating all kinds of problems for the Government and authorities. 



7. Equation of posts and salary is a complex matter which should be left to an expert body. 

8. Granting of pay parity by the court may result in a cascading effect and reaction which can have adverse consequences. 

9. Before entertaining and accepting the claim based on the principle of equal pay for equal work, the Court must consider the factors like the source and mode of recruitment/appointment. 

10. In a given case, mode of selection may be considered as one of the factors which may make a difference.

See Also : The State of Bihar v. The Bihar Secondary Teachers Struggle Committee Munger [Supreme Court of India, 10-05-2019]

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