Friday, 30 September 2016

When mother will not get family pension of deceased married son?

It is pertinent to note that in this case the pension is
to be given under the provisions of the Scheme and
therefore, only the person who is entitled to get the pension
as per the Scheme would get it. Similar issue had arisen
before this Court in the case of Violet Issaac (Smt.) v.
Union of India (1991) 1 SCC 725 and after considering
the relevant provisions, this Court came to the conclusion
that family pension does not form part of the estate of the
deceased and therefore, even an employee has no right to
dispose of the same in his Will by giving a direction that
someone other than the one who is entitled to it, should be
given the same. In the instant case, as per the provisions of
the Scheme, the appellant widow is the only family member
who is entitled to the pension and therefore, the respondent
mother would not get any right in the pension. 
 NON-REPORTABLE
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION
CIVIL APPEAL NO.9823 OF 2016
(Arising out of S. L. P. (C) No.21187 of 2015)
NITU 
VERSUS
SHEELA RANI & ORS. …
Dated:SEPTEMBER 28, 2016.
Citation: 2016 SCCONLINESC 1004,AIR 2016 SC4552



2. The learned counsel appearing for the respondents
waived service of notice and at the request of the learned
counsel, the appeal was heard on the same day.
3. Being aggrieved by an Order dated 21st April, 2015
passed by the High Court of Punjab & Haryana at
Chandigarh in C.R. No.6012 of 2014, the widow of a
government employee has approached this Court with a
grievance that she is not being paid full pension in
accordance with the provisions of the Family Pension
Scheme, 1964 (hereinafter referred to as ‘the Scheme’) of the
Government of Punjab.
4. The facts giving rise to the present litigation, in a
nutshell, are as under :
Shri Yashpal, the husband of the appellant, was
serving as a Computer DOD in the office of the District
Malaria Officer under the Haryana Government. Upon his
death, family pension payable to the widow had been
determined at Rs.2,153/- per month. Respondent No.1,
who is a real contesting respondent, is the mother of late
Shri Yash Pal, who filed Suit No.30/SC of 2005 in the Court
of Civil Judge (Senior Division), Rohtak for getting a
succession certificate so that she can get the pension,
which was payable in respect of the services rendered by
late Shri Yash Pal to the Government of Haryana. In the
said suit, the appellant appeared and made a claim that
she, being the widow of late Shri Yash Pal, was entitled to
pension, whereas sister of late Shri Yash Pal, who was also
a respondent in the said suit filed a written statement
stating that she had no objection if succession certificate
was issued in favour of respondent no.1.
5. After hearing the parties concerned, the learned Civil
Judge (Senior Division), Rohtak dismissed the suit by
coming to a conclusion that the mother, who was the
plaintiff in the said case and the sister of late Shri Yash Pal
were not entitled to succession certificate and held that the
present appellant, who was respondent No.3 in the said
suit, being the widow of the deceased, was entitled to
succession certificate so far as pension payable in respect of
the services rendered by late Shri Yash Pal was concerned.
The said judgment was delivered on 25th April, 2013.
6. Being aggrieved by the aforestated judgment, Civil
Appeal No.88 of 2013 was filed by Respondent No.1 i.e. the
mother of late Shri Yash Pal in the Court of Additional
District Judge, Rohtak. The said appeal was dismissed by
the judgment and order dated 2nd July, 2014.
7. Being aggrieved by the judgment delivered by the first
appellate Court, the respondent mother filed Civil Revision,
being C.R. No.6012 of 2014, before the High Court of
Punjab and Haryana at Chandigarh.
8. After hearing the parties concerned, the High Court
allowed the said Revision Petition by observing that the
respondent mother was entitled to the succession certificate
in view of the provisions of Section 8 of the Hindu
Succession Act as she was also one of the heirs of late Shri
Yash Pal.
9. Being aggrieved by the aforestated order passed by the
High Court, the present appeal has been filed by the
appellant – widow of late Shri Yash Pal.
10. The learned counsel appearing for the appellant
submitted that the appellant is the only person who is
entitled to the pension as per the provisions of the Scheme.
The learned counsel submitted that pension is paid in
pursuance of the aforestated Scheme and therefore, pension
cannot be treated as other assets of the deceased and
according to the provisions of the Scheme, only the
appellant is entitled to the pension. In the circumstances,
according to the learned counsel, the High Court has
committed an error by observing that all legal heirs have a
share in the pension payable in respect of the services
rendered by late Shri Yash Pal.
11. The learned counsel relied upon the provisions of the
Scheme which provide that only the widow is entitled to the
pension and none else. He referred to the provisions of the
Scheme and submitted that the impugned order passed by
the High Court deserves to be quashed and set aside as it is
not in consonance with the provisions of the Scheme.
12. On the other hand, the learned counsel appearing for
the respondent mother submitted that she being a class-I
heir of a Hindu and as late Shri Yash Pal died intestate, she
is entitled to one-half share of the properties of late Shri
Yash Pal, as he was survived by his widow and the mother.
The learned counsel, therefore, submitted that the
impugned order passed by the High Court is just and
proper.
13. The learned counsel appearing for the State supported
the case of the appellant and submitted that in the Scheme,
the term “family” has been defined and in the instant case,
the widow of the deceased is the only person who is entitled
to pension and therefore, the impugned order deserves to be
quashed and set aside so that the entire amount of pension
can be paid to the appellant.
14. We have heard the learned counsel appearing for the
parties and have also perused the provisions of the Scheme.
15. Let us look at the provisions of the Scheme, in
pursuance of which the pension is to be paid in respect of
services rendered by late Shri Yash Pal. Clause 4(ii) of the
Scheme defines the term “family”, which reads as under :-
4(ii). “Family” for the purpose of this scheme
includes the following relatives of the officer:-
(a)wife, in the case of a male officer;
(b)husband, in the case of a female officer;
(c) minor sons;
(d)unmarried minor daughters;
(e) widowed/legally divorced daughters; and
(f) the parents of an unmarried officer.”
16. So far as the respondent mother is concerned, she has
not been included in the definition of the term “family” for
the reason that as per the provisions of sub-clause (f),
parents of an unmarried officer would be a part of the
family and therefore, the respondent mother would not be
included in the family of late Shri Yash Pal as he was
married.
17. So far as the provisions of the Hindu Succession Act,
1956, are concerned, it is true that the properties of a
Hindu, who dies intestate would first of all go to the persons
enumerated in class I of the schedule as per the provisions
of Section 8 of the said Act and therefore, so far as the
properties of late Shri Yash Pal are concerned, they would
be divided among the respondent mother and the appellant
wife, provided there is no other family member of late Shri
Yash Pal alive, who would fall within class 1 heirs, but
position in this case, with regard to pension, is different.
18. It is pertinent to note that in this case the pension is
to be given under the provisions of the Scheme and
therefore, only the person who is entitled to get the pension
as per the Scheme would get it. Similar issue had arisen
before this Court in the case of Violet Issaac (Smt.) v.
Union of India (1991) 1 SCC 725 and after considering
the relevant provisions, this Court came to the conclusion
that family pension does not form part of the estate of the
deceased and therefore, even an employee has no right to
dispose of the same in his Will by giving a direction that
someone other than the one who is entitled to it, should be
given the same. In the instant case, as per the provisions of
the Scheme, the appellant widow is the only family member
who is entitled to the pension and therefore, the respondent
mother would not get any right in the pension. Of course, it
cannot be disputed that if there are other assets left by late
Shri Yash Pal, the respondent mother would get 50% share,
if late Shri Yash Pal had not prepared any Will and it
appears that late Shri Yash Pal had died intestate and no
Will had been executed by him.
19. For the aforestated reasons, in our opinion, the High
Court committed an error by giving a direction that the
respondent mother should also get 50% share in the
pension. In view of the aforestated legal position, the entire
pension would be payable to the appellant widow.
20. In the circumstances, the impugned order is set aside
and it is directed that the pension shall be paid only to the
appellant widow and not to the respondent mother.
21. The appeal stands disposed of as allowed with no
order as to costs.
.…………………………….J.
 (ANIL R. DAVE)
……………………………..J.
 (L. NAGESWARA RAO)
NEW DELHI
SEPTEMBER 28, 2016.
Print Page

No comments:

Post a Comment