Dependents of Ex-Government Employee Receive Benefits, Entitled To Petition Government for Grievances and Delays: Punjab and Haryana High Court

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Excerpt:

The case concerned the matter relating to the release of pensionary benefits to the dependents and heirs of on Ex-employee. 

Brief Facts of the Case: 

The Petitioner- Balbir Kaur lost her son on 26.11.2016, who at the time of death was working as a Rural Medical Officer with the State of Punjab. The widow and children of the deceased shifted to Canada. They had already left an affidavit giving ‘No Objection’ to the authorities to release pensionary benefits to the Petitioner who is the deceased’s mother. 

The petition was filed for the issuance of a writ of mandamus directing the official Respondents to release pensionary and other admissible benefits to the Petitioner exclusively.  

Petitioner’s argument: 

The Petitioner pointed out that the amount of gratuity about the Petitioner’s son had not been released. The Petitioner argued that the writ of mandamus be issued, directing the Respondents to exclusively release pensionary and other admissible benefits to the Petitioner.

Respondent’s argument: 

The reply was filed by Respondent No.3 in which it had been stated that since the widow did not contact the answering Respondent along with necessary papers, the department did not release the amount. It had been submitted that the widow of the deceased was required to sign the necessary papers only then the pensionary benefits can be released. 

It was further informed that the process for releasing the payment on account of Contributory Provident Fund and Family Pension had been initiated and the same shall be completed with the release of the amount within one month from today. 

The Counsel for Respondents No. 6 and 7 (son and wife of the deceased), submitted that the said Respondents did not have any objection if the pensionary benefits in respect of Petitioner’s deceased son, were released to the Petitioner exclusively. 

The Assistant Advocate General, Punjab appearing for the State had pointed out that approximately a sum of ₹ 3,08,000/- had been released to the Petitioner towards arrears of medical reimbursement, salary, leave encashment, and ex-gratia. 

Further, the Court had been assured that whatever amount was legally due to the Petitioner, would be released within one month. 

Observation by the Court: 

The Court observed that the dependents/heirs of an Ex-employee, who died in harness, were being made to run from pillar to post. It is, thus, apparent that the State of Punjab had to put its house in Order lest the Court be compelled to take a serious view of the matter. 

The Decision of the Court: 

The Writ petition was disposed of, however, the Petitioner shall be at liberty to move an application for revival of the writ petition if she feels still aggrieved concerning the subject matter of the writ petition. The miscellaneous applications pending were also disposed of. 

Click here to read Balbir Kaur vs. the State of Punjab.


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