Dead staffer’s parents too entitled to family pension
Tribune News Service , Chandigarh, February 6
The Punjab and Haryana High Court has allowed a petition challenging its own decision on the administrative side before holding that the parents of a deceased employee too are entitled to family pension.
“The purpose of the rules relating to family pension is to provide financial assistance to members of the deceased employee’s family. Not only the widow and children are dependant upon the income of the deceased employee but also the old parents,” Justice Daya Chaudhary has ruled.
The ruling on a petition filed by a 77-year-old widow is significant as the High Court had categorically claimed that the petitioner was not entitled to after-death benefits as she was not included in the definition of a “family”
In her petition against the High Court Registrar-General and other respondents, Bhanti Devi had earlier contended that her son, Virender Singh, was working as a process server in the Fatehabad District and Sessions Court. Besides her, he was survived by his minor son. Her counsel had contended that the minor son was being taken care of by the petitioner; and the divorcee wife has no right to claim benefits after her husband’s death. Taking up the matter,
Justice Chaudhary asserted: “The issue in the present case is as to whether the petitioner, who is mother of the deceased government employee, can be excluded from the definition of a family and denied benefits of family pension. The petitioner is a widow mother, having no source of income, and is of more than 77 years of age. Nothing has been brought on record that she is getting some income from other source.”
Justice Chaudhary added the petition deserved to be allowed. The petitioner was 74 at the time of filing the petition in 2010. She was now more than 77. The employee’s wife had obtained a divorce and had also received permanent alimony. Before parting with the order, Justice Chaudhary ordered the granting of 50 per cent of the family pension to the petitioner while ordering the release of the remaining 50 per cent in favour of the minor”.
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