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Madhya Pradesh High Court Dismisses PIL Seeking Fixing 5 Years As Eligibility Period For Grant Of Pension To MP/MLAs With 10K Cost

Sparsh Upadhyay
13 Aug 2022 2:48 PM GMT
Madhya Pradesh High Court Dismisses PIL Seeking Fixing 5 Years As Eligibility Period For Grant Of Pension To MP/MLAs With 10K Cost
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The Madhya Pradesh High Court recently dismissed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) plea seeking direction to the Union of India and the Madhya Pradesh Government to make fix the tenure of 5 years of the office of the MP/MLAs for their eligibility for a lifetime pension.

The bench of Justice Vivek Rusia and Justice Amar Nath (Kesharwani) imposed a cost of Rs.10,000/- on the petitioner, a practicing advocate as it noted that the petitioner had not conducted a proper research on the subject.

The PIL plea in a brief

Before the Court, the petitioner Purwa Jain submitted that there should be a minimum qualifying period in the relevant Rules and Regulations for grant of pension to Member of Parliament (M.P.) and Member of Legislative Assembly (M.L.A.) at par with the civil servant and judges of High Court and Supreme Court.

In her plea, a challenge was made to Section 6A(1) of the Madhya Pradesh Vidhan Sabha Sadasya (Vetan Bhatta Tatha Pension) Adhiniyam, 1972 and seeking direction to legislature to fix the tenure of a minimum of 5 years of their office as an eligibility period to get lifetime pension.

The petitioner also challenged the constitutional validity of Section 6A(3) of the Adhiniyam of 1972 and sought direction from the legislature to make provision to the effect that the M.L.As. should get only one pension for the last office left by him/her.

The plea also questioned the provision of Section 8A(1) of the Salary, allowance, and Pension of Member of Parliament Act, 1954 and sought an amendment in the provision for fixing tenure of 5 years of the office as minimum eligibility to get a lifetime pension by the Members of Parliaments.

Likewise, by way of suitable amendment in Section 8A(3) of the Act of 1954 restraining the M.Ps. to get only one pension.

Court's observations

At the outset, the Court noted that the validity of Section 6A(1) of the Adhiniyam of 1972 was upheld in the case of Raghu Thakur v/s The State of Madhya Pradesh ILR (1996) M.P. 334 in the year 1996, and thus, the Court said that being an advocate, the petitioner ought to have done homework before filing this petition challenging the constitutional validity of Section 6A(1).

Further, so far as pension payable to the M.Ps. and M.L.As., the Court noted that grievances raised by the petitioner were already negatived by the Apex Court in the case of Lok Prahari Through Its General Secretary S.N. Shukla & Another v/s Union of India Through Its Secretary & Others (2018) 16 SCC 696.

Regarding the prayer that there should be a minimum eligibility period for grant of pension to the M.Ps. and M.L.As. as provided for pension rules applicable to the Government employees / public servants, the Court dismissed the contention while referring to the apex court's ruling in the case of Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay v. Union of India & Another (2019) 11 SCC 683.

Consequently, noting that the plea had been moved by an advocate, without a proper research, the Court dismissed the plea with a 10K Cost and observed thus:

"If any advocate approaches the High Court by way of Public Interest Litigation then it is expected that proper research on the subject ought to have been done The petitioner being an advocate ought to have done research before filing such type of petition. All the issues raised in this petition have already been considered by this Court as well as by the Apex Court."

Case title - Purwa Jain v. UOI and others

Case Citation: 2022 LiveLaw (MP) 188

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