Sangrur ex-serviceman’s widow wins court battle for dual pension
The right to get pension from the civil services is an independent right and cannot be declined on the ground that the person gets pension from the army as well, the Punjab and Haryana high court has held.punjab Updated: Sep 09, 2016 14:10 IST
The right to get pension from the civil services is an independent right and cannot be declined on the ground that the person gets pension from the army as well, the Punjab and Haryana high court has held.
The high court bench of justice Kuldip Singh observed that if someone has served the army until retirement and then put in requisite years in the civil services to be entitled to pension, the civil authorities cannot decline him his family pension on the ground that he gets it from the army.
The court was hearing the petition of a widow from Sangrur, whose husband, Harbans Singh, had retired from the army in October 1994, joined Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL), and died in 2008. After his death, she applied for pension from the PSPCL, but it rejected her claims. She moved the high court in 2012.
The PSPCL argued that two pensions were not permitted under the Punjab Civil Service Rules. The high court took note of the fact that the Haryana Civil Services Rules (as applicable to Punjab) do not say that the dual family pension to any ex-serviceman or his family is not permissible. Also, the central government had stated in a 2013 circular that one can draw two pensions — one from the military and the other, ordinary family pension, from the civil services, subject to fulfilling other conditions.
It also came to light that the civil services rule cited by the respondents does not debar dual pension to the family of the departed government servant who earlier served in the army and received pension from that source. “The ex-serviceman gets the second pension on account of services rendered by him in the civil service and not merely because of his service in the army,” the bench observed, giving the PSPCL three months to release pension to the widow along with arrears and 9% annual interest.