Soldier to get pension after 40 yrs

Himalayan News Service

Shimla, March 31:

The Himachal Pradesh High Court has directed the defence ministry of India to grant a disability pension to a soldier who had been fighting for it for 40 years.Petitioner Sarwan Kumar, a sepoy in the fifth battalion, Mehar regiment, had joined the Indian Army in 1958 but was discharged from service on medical grounds in 1964 after suffering a bout of mental illness.He was not allowed disability pension by the government saying the illness was not attributed to service.Kumar, a resident of the northern state of Himachal Pradesh, appealed to the concerned authorities several times but to no avail.

He then filed a petition in the court alleging that the defence ministry officials had acted against the law by not granting him family pension.

He contended that he was fit at the time of joining the army and had a mental breakdown after joining service.The high court here has directed the defence ministry to grant Kumar family pension since the termination of services 40 years ago.The court also directed the respondents to grant pension with nine per cent interest with effect from 1999.