The Supreme Court has ruled that dearness allowance and house rent allowance payable to an employee should be taken into consideration while awarding compensation to family members of those meeting unnatural deaths like accidents.
“Dearness allowance (DA), in our opinion, should form part of income. House rent allowance (HRA) is paid for the benefit of the family members and not for the employee alone,” a bench of Justices S.B. Sinha and Mukundakam Sharma observed.
The court passed the ruling while upholding the appeal filed by claimants of a woman school teacher who died in a road accident on November 30, 2002, in Madhya Pradesh.
The deceased Puspa Matolya (52) was travelling in a vehicle which dashed against a tree resulting in her death. The Motor Accidents Claims Tribunal awarded compensation to the family without taking into consideration the DA and the HRA and the Madhya Pradesh High Court confirmed the ruling.
Give interim bail, don’t damage status:
Court Noting that a person’s reputation will be damaged irreparably if kept in jail without adequate cause, the Supreme Court has said an accused should be granted interim bail until the plea for regular bail was considered.
“When a person applies for regular bail, then the court concerned ordinarily lists that application after a few days so that it can look into the case diary which has to be obtained from the police authorities and in the meantime the applicant has to go to jail.
“Even if the applicant is released on bail thereafter, his reputation may be tarnished irreparably in society. The reputation of a person is his valuable asset and is a facet of his right under Article 21 of the Constitution,” a vacation bench of Justices Markandeya Katju and Deepak Verma said in an order.
The apex court passed the order while dealing with an appeal filed by Sukhwant Singh challenging the Punjab and Haryana High Court’s refusal to grant him anticipatory bail.