Authorities submit that a proposal for sanctioning pension will be sent within a week

The School Education Secretary and the Director of School Education have managed to stave off contempt proceedings against them for failing to comply with an order to sanction pension to a retired teacher.

The authorities have submitted before the Madras High Court that a proposal for sanctioning pension to the teacher from August 1, 2009, will be sent within a week.

While disposing of the petition, the court, however, posted the matter after summer vacation for reporting compliance.

In his order, Justice N. Paul Vasanthakumar observed that a single Judge had given a direction on the petitioner’s writ plea. The order had been confirmed by a Division Bench which also imposed costs of Rs.10,000 on the department to be paid to the State Legal Services Authority. Even after the dismissal of the writ appeal and payment of costs, no order of compliance had been passed.

On a petition by R. Amsaveni, the court had directed the authorities to count 50 per cent of the services of the petitioner, who had served as a Noon Meal Organiser (NMO) from April 1, 1983 to May 31, 2006 along with her regular service as a Physical Education Teacher from June 1, 2006 to July 31, 2009 for computing pension benefits and grant her pension and all other benefits.

When the contempt petition came up on an earlier date, the court took a serious view and passed a detailed order holding that the respondents – G.Arul Prakasam, Headmaster, Government Higher Secondary School, Goodanagaram, Vellore district, K.Devarajan, Director of School Education and D.Sabitha, School Education Secretary – had disobeyed the court order.

However, on a request by the Special Government Pleader (SGP) to produce the compliance order, a week’s time was granted with a specific direction to produce the order, failing which the three should appear for considering the question of punishment and compensation.

On April 19, the SGP produced a G.O. of April ordering counting of 50 per cent service rendered by the petitioner as an NMO along with the regular service as Physical Education Teacher. A submission was made that the Headmaster would send the proposal for sanction of pension to R.S.Rangarajan, Accountant-General (AG), Tamil Nadu, cited as the first respondent, within one week. On receipt of the proposal, the AG would sanction pension payable to the petitioner within four weeks.

The Judge observed that on facts, it was evident that the petitioner had served as NMO for a meagre salary and he would be able to get pension after retirement as a Physical Education Teacher from August 1, 2009.

Mr. Justice Paul Vasanthakumar said in view of the order passed and the submissions, he was disposing of the contempt petition with a direction to the Headmaster to send the pension proposal within a week to the AG who should sanction pension from August 1, 2009 in terms of the G.O. within four weeks.

By another order in a writ petition, the Judge directed the authorities to pay salary to C.T.Muthukumaran for the entire period he underwent a Post Graduate Diploma course in Medical Radio Therapy, within four weeks. Having regard to the fact that the petitioner was eligible to be admitted as a service candidate in the PG diploma course and he having been successful in it without getting stipend/salary, the petitioner was entitled to get salary for the entire period during which he underwent the course. The petitioner had also complied with the bond condition and now he was serving as a Casualty Medical Officer in Chengalpattu Medical College as per the Director of Medical Education’s allotment in April 2011.

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