The Delhi High Court on Friday allowed the release of compensation pension to a Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel, who was dismissed from the force in less than 10 years of service.
A bench of Justices Suresh Kumar Kait and Sudhir Kumar Jain observed that compensation pension is not relatable to the length of service rendered by the government servant and if the case is deserving, then special consideration has to be provided by the competent authority.
As per the petitioner constable, a 1994 joinee, he was suspended following an argument with his superiors over a training exercise in March 2003 and dismissed from the service following an inquiry on August 20, 2003.
After a long legal battle, on June 15, 2016, he was sanctioned with a compassionate allowance equivalent to two-third of the amount towards a minimum pension in terms of Rule 41 of Central Civil Services Rules, acknowledging the hardship faced by the petitioner.
However, reliance was placed upon Rule 49 of the CCS Rules therein to state that compassionate allowance could be granted only if the qualifying service of 10 years had been undergone, whereas the service duration of petitioner was nine years, one month and eight days only and so, the pension could not be granted to him and only two-third service gratuity could be granted.
According to the petitioner, on September 22, 2020, a letter was received by the petitioner denying any entitlement of compassionate allowance at which he approached the high court.
The court noted that the competent authority at the first instance took a lenient view and granted compensation.
However, the Department of Personnel and Administrative Reforms took the view that the petitioner’s qualifying service is nine years, one month and eight days, i.e. less than 10 years.
In the order, it further said, Pertinently, Rule 49(1) of the Pension Rules does not govern the benefit of compassionate allowance but relates to quantum of compensation, whereas grant of pension has to be dealt within Rule 35-41 of the Pension Rules, which enumerate that the compensation pension is not relatable to the length of service rendered by the government servant.
Also, it is not the case of respondent that in the past a government employee never been kept in a special consideration zone or nor provided compensation pension.
In the light of the above, the impugned order dated September 22, 2020 is hereby set aside and the competent authority is directed to release the amount towards compensation pension along with service gratuity w.e.f. August 21, 2003 in terms of order(s) dated June 15, 2016 and November 9, 2017 within four weeks, the order read.
The bench also made it clear that this order has been passed in the peculiar facts of the present case and shall not be treated as a precedent in any other case.