Vishnu Uthaman
Is it justified to Dismiss a workman in the first instance of absconding?

A workmen absconded from work and after several letters to his residence, a charge sheet is shared with the workmen for absence from duties without any intimation/ approval and domestic enquiry has been initiated. 4 sittings were scheduled, communicated in advance through registered post but the charge sheeted workmen did not appear nor communicated his inability to appear. The enquiry officer closed the enquiry ex-parte and held him guilty of the charges. The second show cause has been sent to the workmen but no reply to that also.

The management hence dismissed the workmen and sent the dismissal letter to the workmen. The workmen did not reply to that either.

The workmen neither has past history of indiscipline nor any warning issued for any misconduct. In this case, is it justified to dismiss the above said workmen ?

From India, Faridabad
Dinesh Divekar
Business Mentor, Consultant And Trainer
Labour Law & Hr Consultant
Hr Manager
Management Consultancy

Dinesh Divekar

Dear Vishnu Uthaman,

In the case at hand, the worker had absconded from his duties. He was given a sufficient chance to depose for the enquiry. However, he did not turn up. Finally, the enquiry was closed and management decided to terminate his services.

If the worker absconds without any information when the notices were sent to him, he remains incommunicado. Against such a backdrop, what management is supposed to do? They have followed the principles of natural justice from their side.

Business owners when they invest in their business enterprise, investment is fraught with risk. In fact, investing money is only one part of the business activity. The real challenge is how to get the work done by others. It requires special skills to run a business enterprise. Those who demonstrate such skills, naturally expect a reasonable profit. However, this profit can be accrued provided the staff employed remains committed to their employment. If some employee plays truant and if the disciplinary action is initiated even with the first misconduct itself then what is wrong?

The management has done a perfect decision of first following a due procedure of discipline and then terminating the workman. This will send a signal to all other employees what can happen if they do misconduct of this kind. To run a business organisation, it is important to institute a culture of discipline. That is what management has done.


Dinesh Divekar

From India, Bangalore

Dear Vishnu,
Abscondence from work is a breach of the contract of employment on the part of the employee and his remaining incommunicado would automatically culminate in the presumption of unilateral termination of the contract of employment by him without adhering to the exit clause and thus becomes a serious misconduct.
Any serious misconduct is worthy of stringent punishment including dismissal of the employee after following all the procedures pertaining to disciplinary action by the employer. Particularly when the delinquent employee wantonly fails to participate in the disciplinary proceedings without any reason, whether the commission of misconduct by him is the maiden one or a repeated one becomes irrelevant in deciding the quantum or nature of the punishment.
Therefore, the punishment of dismissal would be certainly justifiable in such cases whether the misconduct alleged and proved is maiden or repeated.

From India, Salem

@Vishnu Uthaman,
It is quite justified, as confirmed by our learned senior members, with regard to
the punishment awarded by the company management.
Company management ensured and provided ample opportunities to the
delinquent employee but the same were not used by him; hence the proceedings
had to be completed ex parte, and management initiated action based on the
Enquiry report.
It is irrelevant that the employee had neither past history of indiscipline nor any warning issued for any misconduct.
In a business model, top management expects ROI (return on Investment) and strategic management gives direction to this, and middle management and operational management need to take effort for accomplishment of this.

From India, Aizawl

Dear Vishnu Uthaman,
The management has given enough opportunity to keep his side over the misconduct levelled against him. But the workmen did not respond to the communication made to him by his employer, as well did not participate in the inquiry to challenge the allegation.
The behavior of the workman it self sanctifies the action of management is justified. The termination of the workman is justified as it has done by following the laid down procedure of the principles of natural justice.
The misconduct is a misconduct, whether it is done on first instance or regular manner, action deem fit must be taken.

From India, Mumbai

In addition to what all has been said, if at any time the employee comes back with a credible explanation on why he remained incommunicado, you may review the punishment on appeal by the employee. Since there were no bad antecedents and considering that this was the first instance, you may like to substitute the punishment for some other penalty as provided in the rules. Your action so far is perfect and justified.
From India, Mumbai

If you are knowledgeable about any fact, resource or experience related to this topic - please add your views.

About Us Advertise Contact Us Testimonials
Privacy Policy Disclaimer Terms Of Service

All rights reserved @ 2023 CiteHRŽ

All Material Copyright And Trademarks Posted Held By Respective Owners.
Panel Selection For Threads Are Automated - Members Notified Via CiteMailer Server