Compassionate Ground Appointment
The Karnataka High Court has held that sister cannot seek appointment on compassionate grounds upon the death of married employee. The judgment is very much in conformity with the rules governing compassionate ground appointments. Wife/husband or son/ daughter of the deceased employee is the stakeholder for compassionate ground appointments. Adopted son or daughter is also ‘member’ of the family for this purpose. The case does not reveal if the diseased employee had wife or his offsprings. Whatever may be the case, the approach of the appellant for compassionate ground appointment upon the death of his married brother who happened to be lineman in BESCOM (Bangalore Electricity Supply Company) is per se wrong since the rule does not permit for it. The ambit of rules of compassionate ground appointment needs to be expanded to include brother or son for appointment in case the deceased employee does not have wife/husband or son/daughter or when the wife/husband or son/daughter does not come forward seeking appointment. Appointment can be given to the brother or sister with no objection letter from wife/husband or son/daughter accompanying the application.
Earlier, compassionate ground appointment order was being issued to the minor son or daughter soon after they attained majority even after one year from the date of death of employee while in service. This had guaranteed succor to the distressed family. Now this rule has been repealed. Only son or daughter attaining majority within a year of death of the employee is considered for appointment. If the minor son or daughter does not attain majority within a year after the death of the employee, such children are deprived of the benefit that was available earlier. This is infringement of the welfare scheme introduced earlier to the benefit of the deceased family. This must be restored. For this, the employees’ federations or unions have to place formal demand before the government. The demand for it can be stepped up in the coming days. If the demand is conceded the government that can give freebies on many fronts does not shoulder heavy financial burden. As a matter of fact, any benefit once given to people should not be either usurped or curtailed except in cases of gross abuses of the benefits given. There are some cases where the children of the deceased employees do not seek compassionate ground appointment if they are in hot pursuit of higher studies dreaming better future. It would be a fine gesture that any government can give to the bereaved family if it considers appointment for children attaining majority till 5 years after the death of employee.
K V Seetharamaiah