By The Court:
The petitioner had been serving the Government of Meghalaya in its Education Department and was lastly posted as Principal, Government Higher Secondary School, Dadenggiri. As per the submissions of the petitioner, though she reached the age of superannuation on 31.12.2011 but was made to render services further and until 31.05.2012.
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>In this petition, the petitioner has stated the grievance that the respondents have failed to carry out re-fixation of her pay and allowances and have not made the payment of pension and other retiral dues and have even not paid the amount of Rs.5,27,946/- lying in her General Provident Fund [‘GPF’] account.In this petition, notices are ordered to be issued on 08.06.2017 and twice over, adjournments were granted to the learned GA for filing counter affidavit. However, the counter affidavit has not been filed yet.On the matter being taken up today, learned GA prayed for further time for filing counter affidavit to which, learned counsel for the petitioner stated objections with the submission that even after about five years of retirement, the petitioner is waiting for her retiral dues and is facing financial hardship. While finding such objections justified, this Court examined the record and found the position seriously questionable that in the name of certain doubts and queries as regards the date of birth of the petitioner as also the issues relating to the matters of procedure, the respondents have avoided payment of the retiral dues to the petitioner so much so that even the GPF amount has also not been paid and no justification is forthcoming. Upon this Court expressing reservations, learned GA prayed for granting some time to take instructions from the department and to advice all the concerned appropriately. At the request, the matter was passed over.In the second session sitting of the Court, learned GA submits that today, the Deputy Director of School Education and Literacy, Government of Meghalaya has issued a cheque bearing number 269804, drawn on Meghalaya Co-operative Apex Bank Ltd., Laitumkhrah Branch, Shillong for the sum of Rs.5,27,946/- in favour of the petitioner and he has the instructions to hand over the same to the learned counsel for the petitioner in settlement of the petitioner’s claim towards GPF amount. Learned counsel for the petitioner has accepted this cheque on behalf of the petitioner and has given the receipt thereof. Photo copies of the cheque as also receipt have also been placed on the record of this petition.Learned GA submits that as per his instructions, completion of other processes and final settlement of retiral dues of the petitioner is being taken up expeditiously but is likely to take some more time for the petitioner having served in different departments and there being certain un-resolved issues relating to her pension case. This Court is clearly of the view that in the name of any technicality, doubt or query, the respondents are not entitled to keep the matters regarding settlement of retiral dues of an employee pending for an indefinite time.However, when the respondents have taken immediate steps today, at least to partly rectify their past mistakes and delay; and have issued the cheque in favour of the petitioner today itself as regards GPF; and when it has been assured that the other process would be carried out expeditiously, this Court finds it just and proper to dispose of this petition with the requirements that all the remaining aspects relating to the retiral dues of the petitioner as also settlement of her pension amount shall be carried out and finalized expeditiously; and in any case, not later than 90 (ninety) days from today.With the observations and requirements foregoing, this petition stands disposed of.