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Landmark Judgements: The State of U.P. Vs. Prem Lata - The Dying In Harness Case

Case : The State of U.P. Vs. Prem Lata 

Court: Supreme Court of India

Date of Judgement: 05.10.2021

Summary: 

If a Government Servants dies while in service, the Government may provide a suitable post under the Government to the dependent of the Government Servant depending upon certain criterion. But what does it mean by 'Suitable Post'? This judgement of Hon'ble Supreme Court deals with it.

Judgement:-


The relevant para of the Judgement is quoted as under:

"10.2 The Division Bench of the High Court in the present case has
interpreted Rule 5 of Rules 1974 and has held that ‘suitable
post’ under Rule 5 of the Rules 1974 would mean any post
suitable to the qualification of the candidate irrespective of
the   post   held   by   the   deceased   employee.   The   aforesaid
interpretation by the Division Bench of the High Court is just
opposite   to   the   object   and   purpose   of   granting   the
appointment on compassionate ground. ‘Suitable post’ has to
be considered, considering status/post held by the deceased
employee and the educational qualification/eligibility criteria
is required to be considered, considering the post held by the
deceased employee and the suitability of the post is required
to be considered vis a vis the post held by the deceased
employee, otherwise there shall be no difference/distinction
between the appointment on compassionate ground and the
regular appointment. In a given case it may happen that the
dependent of the deceased employee who has applied for
appointment   on   compassionate   ground   is   having   the
educational qualification of Class­II or Class­I post and the
deceased employee was working on the post of Class/Grade18
IV   and/or   lower   than   the   post   applied,   in   that   case   the
dependent/applicant   cannot   seek   the   appointment   on
compassionate ground on the higher post than what was
held by the deceased employee as a matter of right, on the
ground that he/she is eligible fulfilling the eligibility criteria
of such higher post. The aforesaid shall be contrary to the
object   and   purpose   of   grant   of   appointment   on
compassionate ground which as observed hereinabove is to
enable the family to tide over the sudden crisis on the death
of   the   bread   earner.   As   observed   above,   appointment   on
compassionate ground is provided out of pure humanitarian
consideration taking into consideration the fact that some
source of livelihood is provided and family would be able to
make both ends meet."  

Significance: 

This Judgement clears that the post that would be offered to the dependent of a Government Servant under Dying in Harness Rules would be according to his qualification vis a vis the post held by the deceased Government Servant.



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