DINESHCHANDRA DAHYABHAI PATEL Vs. MUNICIPAL SCHOOL BOARD
HIGH COURT OF GUJARAT
Dineshchandra Dahyabhai Patel
Municipal School Board
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(1.) THIS petition under Article 226 of the Constitution of India is preferred by the petitioner who was in service of respondent No.1 as Assistant Teacher having been appointed since 21.11.1963 and retired on 31.10.2000 on attaining the age of superannuation and who suffered Cardio Arrest on 17.8.2000 while the petitioner was on duty at the school and immediately taken to the Rajasthan Hospital, where he was admitted as indoor patient and had to undergo Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery (CABS) as advised by the expert doctors and operated successfully on 21.8.2000 and later on came to be discharged from the hospital on 26.8.2000. Upon refusal by the respondent authorities of his medical bill for reimbursement for the actual expenses for the amount of Rs.91,948/ - for CABS seeks appropriate order in exercise of power under Article 226 of the Constitution of India.
(2.) IT is the case of the petitioner that necessary certificate with regard to CABS dated 26.8.2000 was issued by Dr. Anil Jain, Consultant Cardiothoracic Surgeon of Rajasthan Hospital, Shahibaug, Ahmedabad and necessary representation was made by the petitioner. It is further the case of the petitioner that so far as respondent No.1 is concerned recommendations to reimburse the medical expenses of the petitioner as a special case was forwarded vide resolution dated 18.4.2001 produced at Annexure C to the petition. However, later on, the above item was placed on the agenda of the Standing Committee Meeting held on 26.1.2005 for seeking approval of the Municipal Corporation to consider the recommendations made by the school board.
2.1. In spite of the repeated representation, no decision was taken and, therefore, petitioner has knocked the door of this Court with support of a case decided on similarly situated employee of the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation who was treated for bypass surgery and taken to a private hospital namely Rajasthan Hospital upon refusal to reimburse the actual medical expenses filed vide Special Civil Application NO. 8148 of 2004 before this Court which came to allowed (Coram: Mr. Justice Akil Kureshi) vide order dated 3.3.2005 directing Municipal Corporation to reimburse medical expenses within eight weeks from the date of receipt of the order. The copy of the above order dated 3.3.2005 passed in Special Civil Application No.8148/2004 is annexed with the petition. The petitioner has also relied on another decision dated 12.12.2007 passed by the learned Single Judge (Coram: Hon'ble Mr. Justice Jayant Patel) in Special Civil Application No.13181/2007, where reliance was placed in the earlier decision of Special Civil Application No.8148/2004 and suitable directions were given to the Corporation for reimbursement of the medical expenses.
(3.) SHRI Vaibhav Vyas, learned advocate appearing for the petitioner submits that inaction on the part of the respondent authorities in reimbursing the medical bill of Rs.91,948/ - deserves to be set right, in as much as, the petitioner has infact undergone Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery (CABS) and above fact is not disputed. Not only that but learned advocate for the petitioner submits that respondent No.1 has recommended sanction of reimbursement of the above bill as a special case and other two employees are already given benefit pursuant to the decisions passed by this Court in different Special Civil Applications as stated herein above. Learned advocate, therefore, submits that considering the above facts and circumstances of the case, the petitioner is also an employee of the respondent and almost similarly situated deserves equal treatment at the end and appropriate order be passed.
Shri Saurabh Mehta, learned advocate appearing for respondent No.1 submit that even as per erstwhile policy of year 2000, the petitioner is not entitled since, the treatment of CABS was taken in the hospital not included in the list of hospitals approved by the corporation and as per the policy framed by the Corporation later on dated 26.5.2005, in case of emergency if the treatment is undergone by the employee concerned in other hospital which is approved by the State Government, such an employee will be entitled for reimbursement of the 50% of the amount excluding the room charges and, therefore, according to him the petitioner at the most would be entitled for 50% of the amount. At the same time, recommendations made by the school board as stated earlier is not disputed, for sanction of the reimbursement of medical bill of the petitioner as a special case. No submissions are canvassed distinguishing facts of this case from cases decided by this Court.;
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