INCLUSION OF RANK PAY IN PENSION POST 4TH CPC
STATUS ON MAJOR DHANPALAN CASE
1. Genesis. The GOI resolution that followed the recommendations of 4th CPC, on one hand indicated that Rank Pay would form part of the Basic Pay. However, on the other hand, in the methodology of fixing pay, Rank Pay was to be deducted from the revised consolidated pay and thereafter pay fixed in the next higher slab of pay. This method of consolidating pay, after deducting the Rank Pay, was the issue that Maj Dhanapalan contested in the Kerala High Court. This was upheld by the Hon'ble High Court of Kerala and GOI was directed to refix the pay without deducting the Rank Pay. GOI/MOD appealed against this judgement. However a Division Bench of the same court dismissed the appeal. Subsequently, GOI/MOD file a Special Leave Petition in the Hon'ble Supreme Court, which was also dismissed, albeit due to an inordinate delay in filing of the Special Leave Petition and not on the merit of the case.
(a) Since Maj Dhanapalan case was decided in his favour, a number of Writ Petitions have been filed in different High Courts by retired Naval Officers for grant of similar relief in pay fixation as was granted to Maj Dhanapalan (Retd) by Hon’ble High Court of Kerala.
(b) In consultation with Min of Law & Justice, a Transfer Petition (No 56/ 2007 under Article 139 A of the Constitution) was filed in the Apex Court by Ministry of Defence on behalf of Union of India for clubbing all Writ Petitions pending in different High Courts. The Hon’ble Supreme Court vide order dated 05 Feb 07 has granted interim stay for further proceedings.
(c) Transfer Petition was heard in Hon’ble Supreme Court on 09 May 08 wherein the Hon'ble Supreme Court directed that these cases are to be clubbed together for further hearing by them. Subsequently, case was heard on 20 Oct 08, wherein the Govt Counsel sought a week time to seek GoI instructions to proceed further. Subsequently, the case was heard on 03 Nov 08, where the counsel for the respondent submitted that cases in which pleading are complete be disposed off. The Hon'ble Court gave two weeks time to file rejoinder, if any, by GOI. Thereafter, the case be listed for final disposal.
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