N R JOSHI Vs. STATE OF GUJARAT
HIGH COURT OF GUJARAT
N. R. Joshi
State of Gujarat and Others
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(1.) This is a case of a petitioner - a retired primary school teacher making representation to various authorities for the fixation of his pension and payment of gratuity and a unique example of utter disregard and callousness of the authorities concerned so much so that when the petition was filed in September 1977 (the petitioner was 68 years of age) even in November 1983 none of the respondents has cared to file an affidavit-in-reply or to show any reason for non- payment of gratuity and fixation of pension for a period of about 18 years. I have asked the learned counsel for the State Government to produce the file of the petitioner and to show me the reasons as to why his pension case has not been finalised and gratuity not paid to him. The learned Government Pleader says that he has not got the original file nor any material to show reasons. Unfortunately the Government Solicitors though filed their appearance are not present. In this view of the matter there is no option for me except to proceed with the matter on the basis of the petition and take all averments therein to be true. In this Welfare State if a teacher who has spent best years of his life for the service of the State gets a provisional pension of Rs. 30.00 since last 18 years which cannot even satisfy his barest necessity it is really very unfortunate. The facts of the case are as under.
(2.) The petitioner joined service as a Primary School Teacher in the then Baroda State on 20/07/1934 was confirmed as such on 1/01/1935 On merger of Baroda State with the State of Bombay in 1949 the petitioner was absorbed in the Bombay State and was posted under the Amreli District Primary Education Board where he worked upto 17/08/1961 as a Primary School Teacher.
(3.) On 17/08/1961 the petitioner was transferred to Government Teachers Training School at Badia and from that school the petitioner was made to retire from 15/06/1965 The order of his retirement is produced at Annexure-A. Generally papers for pension are to be prepared prior to the retirement so that the incumbent can start getting his pension as soon as he retires. (It has now been an accepted position that pension is not a bounty of the State. It is given by the welfare State as a due compensation for having done best service and the petitioner has a statutory right for early fixation and regular receipt of month to month pension). After the efforts of about two years in February 1967 provisional pension of a meagre amount of Rs. 30 per month was fixed by the authorities. According to the petitioner when he retired his basic salary was Rs. 150.00 plus dearness allowance admissible from time to time and therefore according to his calculation he was expecting at least Rs. 60.00 per month plus dearness allowance as pension. The petitioner made a representation to the Director of Education by his letter dated 29/08/1967 requesting him to direct the Administrative Officer District Education Committee Amreli-respondent No. 3 herein to prepare the pension papers of the petitioner but nothing happened. The petitioner again made a representation. As seen from annexure-C the Senior Deputy Accountant General Mr. R. Raman had addressed a letter to the Director of Education for expediting the documents and the information asked for. Last para of his letter being relevant is reproduced below:
As nearly 12 years have elapsed after retirement of the pensioner I shall be thankful if you could expedite the documents and information mentioned above. This leaves no doubt that the authorities of the State Government were totally negligent and callous in sending the information so that the Accountant General could have finally fixed pension and gratuity of the petitioner. It appears that the petitioner has made a representation in 1976 prior to the filing of the petition and enquired as to why his pension has not been settled and why he has not been replied. Again it appears that the Director of Education wrote to the Administrative Officer Amreli by his letter of November 1976 produced at annexure-B as to why decision is not being taken etc. and a copy thereof was given to the petitioner. But unfortunately neither the pension was paid nor reasons were given and therefore the petitioner had to file this petition in September 1977;
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