India & ANR. Vs. C.S. Sidhu  INSC 244 (31 March 2010)
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CIVIL APPEAL NO.
4474 OF 2005 Union of India & Anr. .... Appellants Versus C.S. Sidhu ....
O R D E R
Heard Mr. Parag P. Tripathi, learned Addl. Solicitor General
appearing for the appellants.
There is no appearance on behalf of the respondent today.
This appeal by special leave is directed against the impugned
judgment and order dated 11.12.2003 of the Division Bench of the High Court of
Punjab & Haryana whereby the writ petition filed by the respondent herein
(writ petitioner before the High Court) has been allowed and the appellants
herein (respondents before the High Court) have been directed to count the
entire period of full pay commissioned service of the respondent from
22.06.1968 to 23.06.1978 as qualifying service and calculate his disability
pension in 2 accordance with pension scales as on 23.6.1978 and give him all other
benefits inuring therefrom.
The facts in detail have been given in the impugned judgment and
order. Hence, we are not repeating the same here.
The question involved in this appeal is whether the full pay
commissioned service rendered by the respondent herein from 22.06.1968 to
23.06.1978 is to be counted as qualifying service by the Union of India for the
purpose of granting disability pension to the respondent.
The respondent herein was an officer in the Indian Army who was
given a short service commission on 22.06.1968.
service commission is given for 5 years and can be extended by another 5 years
only. He was posted at a high altitude field area and while on duty on
21.11.1970, he met with an accident and suffered severe injuries. As a result
of the accident, respondent's right arm had to be amputated.
suffered a compound fracture of the femur (thigh bone) and fracture of the
mandible (jaw bone). He was released from service of Army on 23.6.1978. For his
3 disability pension, the period taken into account by the Army authorities was
only from 22.6.1968 to 21.11.1970.
by the said decision of the Army authorities, the respondent filed a writ
petition before the High Court which has been allowed by the impugned judgment
and order. Hence, the appellants are in appeal before us.
We have gone through the impugned judgment and order and we are in
full agreement with the Division Bench of the High Court that for the purposes
of qualifying service for disability pension the entire period of commissioned
service rendered by the respondent from 22.6.1968 to 23.6.1978 has to be taken
into account. Accordingly, we see no reason to interfere with the impugned
judgment and order of the High Court. The appeal is accordingly dismissed. No
order as to the costs. Arrears with 8% interest per annum will be paid to the
respondent within three months.
Before parting with this case, we regret to say that the army
officers and army men in our country are being treated in a shabby manner by
the government. In this case, the respondent, who was posted at a high altitude
field area and met with an accident during discharge of his duties, was 4
granted a meager pension as stated in Annexure-P3 to this appeal. This is a
pittance (about Rs. 1000/- per month plus D.A.). If this is the manner in which
the army personnel are treated, it can only be said that it is extremely
unfortunate. The army personnel are bravely defending the country even at the
cost of their lives and we feel that they should be treated in a better and
more humane manner by the governmental authorities, particularly, in respect of
their emoluments, pension and other benefits.
.....................J. (MARKANDEY KATJU)
.....................J. (A.K. PATNAIK)