Allahabad HC slams 3 DMs over denial of post-retirement benefits to retired senior officer's family

The Allahabad High Court has strongly criticized the bureaucratic outlook of not giving pension and retirement benefits and family pension to the Chief Food Inspector, who retired on December 31, 1993.

A single bench of Justice J.J. Munir heard the petition filed by Saraswati Devi. In this case, the petitioner's husband retired from the post of the Chief Food Inspector on 31.12.1993. He died on 24.12.1995. The pension of the petitioner's husband and the petitioner's family pension have not been paid since January, 1994 and other post-retirement benefits have also not been paid.

The Court observed,

In this connection, the attention of the Court has been drawn to a letter dated 10.12.2021 sent by the Chief Medical Officer, Farrukhabad to the District Magistrate, Farrukhabad. A reading of the letter is sufficient to make one's belief firm in the culpable insensitivity of functioning of the respondents, which deserves to be put down with a heavy hand.

It shows that the petitioner's family pension and her husband's retirement benefits have not been paid because his service record is not traceable in consequence of his various postings at Etah and Aligarh during the relevant period of time preceding his retirement.

It is almost 30 years that the petitioner's late husband retired and the Chief Medical Officer, Farrukhabad, and seemingly, the District Magistrate, Farrukhabad as also the District Magistrates and Chief Medical Officers of Aligarh and Etah are at peace with the idea that pension and post-retirement benefits due to an employee cannot be paid because in their bureaucratic outlook the loss of record leading to nonpayment of post-retirement benefits to the widow of a deceased employee is a trifling.

"Let the District Magistrates of Farrukhabad, Aligarh, Etah and the Chief Medical Officers of Farrukhabad, Aligarh and Etah, all file their personal affidavits indicating the correct position within three days. Also, the matter being very old, all the officers concerned will take a stand before this Court about the ways and means according to which the petitioner's family pension and her deceased husband's retirement pension, besides all other due post retiral benefits shall be paid. All the respondents will remember that payments of post retiral benefits have to be made whether the records are found or not. It is up to them to devise ways and means to do so and to do all this, they have three days' time, during which the requisite affidavits have to be filed.

In case, the requisite affidavits are not filed by any of the six officers, the officer in default shall remain personally present before the Court on 10th June, 2022," the Court ordered.

The Court has fixed the next hearing of the petition on June 10, 2022.