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Defence Ministry not to pursue pending disability pension cases

 Going against the advice of his own babus, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar has decided not to pursue nearly 4,000 disability pension cases pending against his ministry in courts, a move which will benefit thousands of soldiers waging a long legal battle.



New Delhi: Going against the advice of his own babus, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar has decided not to pursue nearly 4,000 disability pension cases pending against his ministry in courts, a move which will benefit thousands of soldiers waging a long legal battle.

"I took the decision two days ago not to pursue such cases because of which about 4,000 cases will automatically get dropped" he told reporters here.
He said the ministry wanted to challenge an adverse court order in this regard but he has ordered it not to be pursued.

However, a lawyer said the government was left with no choice but to accept.

"Nice gesture by the minister but there was no other option for the ministry since it was a direction by a three judge bench of the Supreme Court last month.

"Even MoD's review petition in a similar case was dismissed in January 2014 by the apex court. The new regime should have ideally taken suo moto action of withdrawing appeals and thereby earning goodwill of disabled soldiers," Maj (retd) Navdeep Singh, advocate of Punjab & Haryana High Court, told PTI.

He said some of the appeals filed by the MoD involved petty amounts of Rs 155 or Rs 310 per month.

"The minister, who is a very genuine person, should now ensure the end of such morbid appeals," he said.

There are three bands to judge disability across the board.

Up to 50 per cent disability, a person was to be given the benefits of a 50 per cent disability holder while a person with 51-75 per cent disability was to be given 75 per cent disability benefits. A person with 76-100 per cent disability was to be given 100 per cent disability benefits.

However, the benefits were granted to only those who were removed from service by the government on medical grounds, and not to those who retired after their full service.

From Zee News

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