Retired police personnel of select wings left in a lurch for over three years

Lack of clarity on the issue of “special pay” has left retirees from the police department claiming unpaid dues. They say that on August 14, 2009, the State government declared police personnel working in select wings of the department eligible for 10 per cent of their basic pay as special pay. But this has not been factored in while computing the pension benefits of those police personnel who retired from service after August 2009.

The special pay was granted to police personnel from the cadre of constables to non-Indian Police Service superintendents of police serving in the Special Branch Criminal Investigation Department (SBCID), SBCID- Special Division, Q Branch CID and Core Cell CID, apart from Special Branch Assistants and Shorthand Bureau staff, with effect from August 1, 2009 through a Government Order passed by the Home Department.

Since then, the heads of the respective wings of the police department have submitted pension proposals to the Accountant General’s office by adding the special pay to the last drawn salary of the retired employees for the purpose of determining the monthly pension, which is 50 per cent of the last drawn pay of a government servant.

However, the Accountant General’s office in Chennai had not factored in the special pay while computing and sanctioning pension benefits on the ground that the State government did not make it clear whether such pay had a bearing on pension.

A. Rajendran, who retired as a sub-inspector of police from SB-CID, Madurai, on October 31, 2009, moved the Madras High Court Bench here this year after approaching the competent authorities on the issue and being told in a letter by the Accountant General’s office on July 31, 2012 that “clarification is still awaited from the Government of Tamil Nadu.”

The court issued a direction to the Accountant General to consider his plea within three months.

“It is more than seven months since I obtained the court order. Yet there seems to be no light at the end of the tunnel. I stand to lose more than Rs.1 lakh due to lack of clarity on the issue,” he said.

R. Nithyanandam, a retired District Treasury Officer, expressed the view that generally special pay would be taken into consideration while computing pension if such pay was eligible for Dearness Allowance, and not otherwise.

“I do not know why there is a delay of over three years in clarifying the issue. It is up to the government to explain,” he observed.