Service and Labour Law — Disability pension — Discharge on medical ground

August 26th, 2013

Service and Labour Law — Disability pension — Discharge on medical ground, Reliance on inchoate opinion of Psychiatrist, Non-consideration of improvement, Effect of — At time of enrolment in military service, appellant was found fit in all respects by Recruiting Medical Officer — Discharge from service, whereby Invaliding Medical Board simply endorsed the observation made by psychiatrist that it was a case of “Schizophrenic Reaction” — Appeal against order of the Armed Forces Tribunal, dismissing the application filed by the appellant for grant of leave to file appeal against orders of denial of disability pension — Held, Tribunal did not even bother to look into the contents of the certificate issued by the Invalidating Medical Board and mechanically observed that it cannot sit in appeal over the opinion of the Medical Board — Observation made by Psychiatrist was substantially incompatible with the existing literature on the subject and the conclusion recorded by the Invaliding Medical Board that it was a case of Schizophrenic Reaction was not well founded and required a review in the context of the observation made by psychiatrist herself that with the treatment the appellant had improved — Tribunal should have ordered constitution of Review Medical Board for re-examination of the appellant — Impugned orders are legally unsustainable — Accordingly, respondents are directed to refer the case to Review Medical Board for reassessing the medical condition of the appellant and find out whether at the time of discharge from service he was suffering from a disease which made him unfit to continue in service and whether he would be entitled to disability pension — Appeal allowed — Constitution of India — Article 136 — Disability pension — Reassessment of medical condition.

Controller of Defence Accounts (Pension) v. S. Balachandran Nair, (2005) 13 SCC 128 & Ministry of Defence v. A.V. Damodaran, (2009) 9 SCC 140, Distinguished.

(Para 17 to 20)

Veer Pal Singh v. Secretary, Ministry of Defence[Bench Strength 3], Civil Appeal No. 5922/2012(02/07/2013), 2013(8) SCALE 686: 2013(10) JT 71 [G.S. Singhvi, J.: Ranjana Prakash Desai, J.: Sharad Arvind Bobde, J.]

Entry Filed under: Legal Updates

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