Decided on August 26,2019

Thiyam Ranjit Singh Appellant


M.V. Muralidaran, J. - (1.) The writ petition has been filed by the petitioner seeking to quash the impugned letter/instruction No.25/Estt/TED/09-10/316, dated 25.03.2014 issued by respondent No.2 and to direct respondent No.3 to allow withdrawal of the pension amount of the petitioner as per his choice and further to release immediately the total pension amount, which has been put on hold, to the petitioner.
(2.) The case of the petitioner is as follows: The petitioner was serving as SO Grade-I(R) in the Department of Electricity and the retired on attaining the age of superannuation, while serving in the said post under Executive Engineer, Tamenglong Division on 28.02.2010. The Senior Deputy Accountant General (A&E), Manipur issued pension payment order in favour of the petitioner with effect from 01.03.2010 and, accordingly, the petitioner was drawing an amount of Rs.17,862/- per month as on March, 2014. 2.1. While that being so, without any intimation from any quarter, the State Bank of India, Manipur University Branch from where the petitioner was drawing pension amount refused to withdraw the pension amount with effect from the month of April, 2014 and despite the request of the petitioner, the Bank had refused to divulge any reason for such denial to withdraw. However, the petitioner came to know that the withdrawal of pension was blocked on instruction by respondent No.2. In this regard, the petitioner submitted RTI application to the Assistant General Manager, RBO, State Bank of India, Babupara, Imphal on 04.02.2016 asking reasons for blockage of the withdrawal of the pension amount, but it was again denied on the ground that no fee as per RTI rules was paid. 2.2. Again on 22.02.2016, the petitioner submitted RTI application to the Assistant General Manager, RBO, State Bank of India, Babupara, for which the Bank authority informed vide letter dated 21.03.2016 that respondent No.2 has written to respondent No.3 to stop payment of pension till dues are cleared vide impugned letter dated 25.03.2014. Further, they have supplied letter dated 13.01.2016 written by the Chief Manager of State Bank of India confirming that the bank has put on hold a sum of Rs.5,00,000/- on instruction by respondent No.2, which was communicated to respondent No.3 vide impugned letter. According to the petitioner, there is no reason whatsoever for respondent No.2 to give such instruction to stop payment of the pension till dues are cleared and there are no dues to be cleared by the petitioner to respondent No.2 and thus, prayed for setting aside the impugned letter and direct to pay pension to the petitioner.
(3.) Respondent No.1 filed affidavit-in-opposition stating that the Executive Engineer (Tamenglong), Electricity Department, Manipur, wrote the impugned letter to respondent No.3 for stoppage of payment of the petitioner's pension till dues are cleared as the petitioner has misappropriated a sum of Rs.4,59,052/- from the Revenue collected during his tenure as Assistant Engineer (Electricity), Tamenglong Division. It was communicated to the petitioner time and again to clear the dues, but the petitioner has failed to do so. It is stated in the affidavit-in-opposition that at the time of retirement, the petitioner signed a consent certificate for recovery of any Government outstanding dues which happened due to him on account of pay, arrears and allowances etc. if so the excess amount may be adjusted/recovered from his retirement benefit like pension/gratuity/fraction of commutation to the pension etc. Stating so, respondent No.1 prayed for dismissal of the writ petition.;

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