The Madras High Court (Madurai Bench), in B. Senthil Kumar vs. The District and Sessions Judge, has held that pensionary benefits due to government servants cannot be given to their brothers and step-brothers above the age of 18 years.
Senthil Kumar was nominated by his sister as legal heir in respect of the special provident fund, death-cum-retirement gratuity, general provident fund and had also executed a registered Will, appointing him to succeed her estate in respect of the receipt of the said service benefits.
Kumar submitted a representation to the District and Session Judge praying for disbursement of pensionary benefits due to her sister who was a Grade-I Bench Clerk in Tamil Nadu Judicial Ministerial Services, by virtue of nomination and it was returned by stating that in view of Rule 48(8) of the Tamil Nadu Pension Rules, he cannot be construed as family members and even otherwise he had crossed the age of 18 years.
The division bench comprising of Justice M Sathyanarayanan and Justice J Nisha Banu agreed with the submission of the District Judge’s authority that denied Kumar the pensionary benefits of his deceased sister, that as per Sub Rule 5 of Rule 45 of the Tamil Nadu Pension Rules, Kumar could not be considered as a family member unless at the time of nomination he was below the age of 18 years and admittedly that was not the case with Kumar.
The bench held that “though it is the vehement submission of the learned Counsel appearing for the petitioner that in terms of Rule 48 of the Tamil Nadu Pension Rules, the petitioner falls under the category of specified nominee, 5 in the considered opinion of this Court, the said stand lacks merit”.
The court was, thus, of the view that the impugned decision of the district court authority warranted no interference and, accordingly, dismissed the writ petition.
Read the Judgment here.
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