Justice D Hariparanthaman of Madras High Court has directed the Health Department authorities to pay the sum of family pension with 10% interest to a widow and said that she was eligible for family pension even though her husband had died within a year after joining the government service. Court also directed the authorities to pay the sum with 10% interest.
Court further ordered that, “there cannot be any further delay in payment of family pension to her, as she is a widow agitating for family pension since 1988.” Death-cum-retirement gratuity amount for the service period also should be given with interest, if it is not already paid.
It was a case where, the deceased husband joined the Health Department as office assistant way back in November 25, 1987, but died on June 13, 1988. In spite of a civil court order declaring the widow as well as her daughter as legal heirs of the deceased in the year 1995, Health Department did not pay the pension as well as gratuity to the widow as well as her daughter.
Court observed that, as per Rule 49 (2) of the Tamil Nadu Pension Rules, even if a government servant had rendered less than one year of service, his widow was entitled to family pension. Court further noted that, “since the rule provides for family pension, the department is directed to send necessary proposal for family pension and for death-cum-retirement gratuity to the principal accountant general within four weeks, since the government servant died long back in 1998. The department is also directed to pay interest on the belated settlement of pension at 10%.”