Decided on July 23,1993

Mst. Pawan Samyal Appellant
State JAndk Respondents

Referred Judgements :-



R.P. Sethi, J. - (1.)The petitioner's husband, after rendering 20 years of service as a professor of chemistry in G.G.M. Science College, Jammu, died on 17.9.1985 when he was only 45 years of age. He was survived by his wife and three minor female children. In her claim for the grant of family pension, respondent No. 3 issued an intimation letter dated 1.11.1985 addressed to the Treasury Officer, Addl. Treasury, Jammu, intimating her that her family pension at the rate of Rs. 494.40 and D.A. @ 581 per month w.e.f. 18.9.1985, had been allowed with a further instruction to her to appear before the Treasury Officer to receive the payment. Calculating the pension under Rule 20(bb) of the Family Pension-cum-Gratuity Rules, the family pension of the petitioner is likely to be reduced w.e.f. from 17.9.1992 when seven years' period is to lapse. It is submitted that SRO-310 of 1986 dated 8.5.1986 provided that the family pension of the dependents of the Government servants who die in harness, would be equal to the amount of last pay drawn by the deceased official for the first 7 years and thereafter the family pension was to be paid at the rate of 50% of the pay last drawn or twice the family pension admissible as per rule 20(ii) (aaa) of the Family Pension-cum-Gratuity Rules, whichever was less, for the next 7 years or till the deceased would have attained the age of 62 years whichever was earlier and thereafter the family pension would be made payable at the ordinary rates laid down in rule 20(ii) (aaa) of the aforesaid rules. It has been prayed that the petitioner is entitled to the grant of benefit of SRO-310 of 1986 by quashing the words :
"These rules shall be deemed to have come into effect from 1.1.1986" incorporated in the said SRO. It is submitted that denial to the petitioner of the grant of benefit was violative of Art. 14 of the Constitution of India.

(2.)In the reply filed on behalf of the respondents it has been submitted that the petitioner is not entitled to the grant of the benefit of SRO-310 and that her petition being misconceived is liable to be dismissed. It is submitted that as no fundamental or legal right to the petitioner has been violated she is not entitled to maintain the present petition. It is contended that as per SRO-310 of 1986, family pension at the rate of last pay drawn by the deceased employee who dies while in service is admissible in service or upto the superannuation of the deceased employee whichever is earlier but it is contended that the petitioner is not entitled to it. It is further submitted that the doctrine of classification was evolved to sustain a State action designed to help segment of the society in need of succour. The cut off date i.e. 1.1.1986 is claimed to be not arbitrary or devoid of rational consideration. In fixing the cut-off date the authorities are stated to have not acted mala fide with a view to deprive those who retired before 1.1.1986 of the benefit it was not practical to extent the benefits to such employees as UGI scheme became operative i.e. from 1.1.1986.
(3.)I have heard learned counsel for the parties and perused the record.

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