Association of Absorbed Central Government Employee Vs. Arvind Verma & Ors
 INSC 271 (1 May
Ahmad, K. Venkataswami, S. Rajendra Babu K. Venkataswami,
O R D
Court in a judgment dated 15.12.1995 in Welfare Association of Absorbed Central
Government Employees in 2 SCC 187], inter alia, held as follows:- "From
the above extracts, it will be seen that a clear-cut distinction is made in
Rule 37-A itself between one-third portion of pension to be commuted without
any condition attached and two-third portion of pension to be received as
terminal benefits with condition attached and two-third portion of pension to
be received as terminal benefits with condition attached with it. It follows
that so far as commutation of one-third of the pension is concerned, the
petitioners herein as well as petitioners in "common Cause" stand on
similar footing with no difference. So far as the balance of two-third pension
is concerned, the petitioners herein have received the commuted value (terminal
benefits) on condition of their surrendering of their right of drawing
two-thirds of their pension. This was not the case with the petitioners in
"Common Cause" case. That being the position the denial of benefit
given to "common Cause" petitioners to the present petitioners
violates Articles 14 and 16 of the Constitution. The reasoning for restoring
one-third commuted pension in the case of "Common Cause" petitioners
equally applies to the restoration of one-third commuted pension in the case of
these petitioners as well.
the foregoing reasons, we hold that the petitioners are entitled to the
benefits as given by this Court in "Common Cause" case so far as it
related to restoration of one-third of the commuted pension.
the impugned para 4 of Office Memorandum dated 5.3.1987 is quashed. The writ
petitions are accordingly allowed to the extent indicated above, No
costs." As the respondents did not give effect to the judgment, the
petitioners, on an earlier occasion, moved this Court in Contempt petition No.
310 of 1996, which was disposed o by this Court on 7.10.1996 by passing the
following order:- " The counter has been filed wherein it has been stated
that the directions of this Court are in the process of being complied with.
contempt Petition is disposed of." Thereafter, it appears that the
respondents construing the judgment of this Court literally restored one-third
of the commuted pension and denied all other attendant benefits as made
available to the other Central Government pensioners. Aggrieved by that, the
petitioners have moved this Court once again by filing this Contempt Petition.
Ahmad, learned Additional Solicitor General, once again attempted to re-open
the issue that the petitioners cannot be treated at par with the Central
Government pensioners even though such a contention was raised and negatived by
this Court in the said judgment. For the reasons already stated in the
judgment, we hold that the petitioners have to be treated at par with the
Central Government pensioners. When we directed the respondents to restore the
one-third portion of the commuted pension, it was intended to be given effect
to in letter and spirit, which means that the restoration of pension must be
with attendant benefits as given to the Central Government pensioners. The
learned Additional Solicitor General brought to our notice the statement in paragraph
15 of the Additional Affidavit on behalf of Respondent Nos. 1 to 3, which reads
as follows:- "In the case of PSU absorbees, they have drawn lump sum
capitalized value for the 2/3rd portion of pension as one time settlement.
portion is therefore no longer available to the absorbed employees in the
nature of pension and according to the Supreme Judgment dated 15.12.1995 the
petitioners have received the commuted value (terminal benefits) on condition
of their surrendering their right of drawing 2/3rds of their pension. In view
of this, the absorbed employees are not entitled to the grant of dearness
relief on this 2/3rd commuted portion of pension (terminal benefits)." It
will be noticed that the Central Government pensioners are given revision in the
pension, which was not given to the petitioners on the ground that this Court
had ordered only restoration of pension.
hearing counsel on both sides, we make it clear that the respondents are liable
to restore not only the pension as ordered by this Court in the said judgment,
but also all attendant benefits as given to the Central Government pensioners.
We hold that there was some genuine doubt on they part of the respondents in
construing and giving effect to the judgment of this Court and, therefore,
there is no contempt. We now direct the respondents to comply with the judgment
of this Court as explained hereinbefore within three months from this date.
contempt petition will stand disposed of accordingly.