War veteran gets pension after 50 yrs

The bench said this shortfall was minor, negligible and liable to be condoned

Chennai: The regional bench of the armed forces tribunal, Chennai, has directed the defence ministry to provide reservist pension to an 84-year-old Indian Air Force war veteran, five decades after he was arbitrarily discharged from service. The bench, comprising judicial member, Justice V. Periya Karuppiah, and administrative member, Lt Gen K. Surendra Nath, directed the authorities to provide the pension in three months with effect from October 2010.

Petitioner T.V. Kothandaraman, 84, of Adyar, submitted that he was enrolled in the Indian Air Force as an airman on August 23, 1949 for a term of nine years regular service and six years in reserve service. He was discharged from regular service in 1958 and transferred to reserve service for six years.

The IAF recalled him for active service during the emergency in the wake of the India-China war in 1962, and he served up to August 18, 1963. Finally, he was released from the Air Force on August 18, 1963, stating, “service no longer required”.

His plea for reservist pension was rejected, citing that he did not complete 15 years of qualifying service. The Air Force submitted that he falls short of the mandatory requirement by 12 months and 4 days. As per government orders, any deficiency or shortfall in service can be condoned by 12 months.

The bench said this shortfall was minor, negligible and liable to be condoned. The petitioner was eligible for reservist pension and other entitlements as applicable, the bench added.

( Source : dc )
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