Dalveer Bhandari, J.
1. The petitioners have approached this Court against the transfer orders dated
25.3.1997 issued by the respondent Bank by which the petitioners have been transferred outside Delhi. The main argument of the petitioners in this case is that the respondent Punjab National Bank has wrongly interpreted the ‘Length of Service’ as
Length of Service in the Cadre, against the spirit and language of the guidelines dated
16.9.1993. The petitioners have prayed that the illegal and erroneous transfer orders
2. The petitioners have relied upon the guidelines dated 16.9.1993. The relevant portion of the guidelines reads as under:
“In the event the staff is identified as surplus for the Zone, the matter may be taken up with HO: Personnel Division for the redeployment of such staff ‘ in the same language area of nearby Zones.
For out of station transfers but within the Region/Zone, the criteria should be the length of service of an employee, i.e., the employees with lesser length of service should be transferred first. This will, however, not apply in case of lady employees and physically handicapped employees employed on this ground, and employees retiring within next three years, subject to merits of each case.
3. Mr. Mukul Rohtagi, learned counsel appearing for the petitioners submitted that in view of the guidelines issued by the Punjab National Bank on 16.9.1993, the petitioners could not have been transferred because there are many employees who are junior to the petitioners (from the date of appointment in the service of the bank,) therefore, the petitioners’ transfer is in clear contravention of the guidelines issued by
the Punjab National Bank and consequently, the impugned transfer order being contrary to the guidelines ought to be quashed.
4. Mr. O.C. Mathur, learned counsel appearing for the Punjab National Bank submitted that these transfers have been made in consonance with the guidelines issued by the Punjab National Bank on 16th September, 1993. The Punjab National Bank has strictly adhered to the guidelines issued by the bank. Mr. Mathur further submitted that the ‘length of service’ of the petitioners means length of service of the petitioners in the clerical cadre and not from the date of appointment in the bank.
5. Mr. Mathur submitted that the guidelines were issued on 16th September, 1993 but immediately thereafter, specific clarification was issued on 26.10.1993. In the clarification, it is clearly mentioned that the length of service of such employees should reckon from their postings in the clerical cadre and not from the date of appointment in the service of the bank.
6. The relevant portion of the clarification reads as under :-
“We are receiving number of queries regarding criteria that should be adopted for calculating the length of service of an employee. Their contention is whether length of service of an employee who has been placed in clerical cadre on his promotion from subordinate cadre, is to be calculated from date of appointment in the service of the bank or from the date of posting in a clerical cadre. It is clarified that length of service of such employee should reckon from posting cadre and not from the date of appointment in the service of the bank.”
7. Mr. Mathur further submitted that the guidelines and the clarification have been in force for almost three and a half years and hundreds of transfers have been made, following the guidelines dated 16.9.1993 and as clarified on 22.10.1993.
8. I have heard learned counsel for the parties at length. The transfers are part of administrative exigencies and necessary incidence of service. The respondent bank has been uniformly implementing the guidelines issued on 16.9.1993 and clarification on 22.10.1993 for the last several years. The said clarification has been given by the bank that the length of service of each employee should be reckoned from the date of posting in the clerical cadre and not from the date of appointment in the service of the bank. In view of this clarification no ambiguity of any kind survives because the clarification is specific and explicit and is not capable of any other interpretation.
9. I do not find any infirmity in reckoning the ‘Length of Service’ of employees from the date of posting in the cadre and not from the date of appointment in the service of the respondent Bank for the purpose of transfers.
The writ petition is devoid of any merit and is accordingly rejected. In the facts and circumstances of this case, I direct the parties to bear their own costs