(Prayer: Writ Petition under Article 226 of the Constitution of India praying for a Writ of Mandamus directing the respondents to pay Rs. 4,70,111/- being the interest at the rate of 12% for the belated payment of pension and retirement benefits.)
1. This writ petition has been filed seeking for a Writ of Mandamus directing the respondents to pay Rs. 4,70,111/- being the interest at the rate of 12% for the belated payment of pension and retirement benefits.
2. The petitioner, after having worked in several capacities for long years, retired from service as Revenue Officer from the third respondent Municipality on 30.06.1998, of course on superannuation.
3. After his retirement, his retiral benefits were not immediately paid and it was belatedly paid. Therefore, he seems to have approached the Administrative Tribunal, where he got an order directing the authorities concerned to pay the retiral benefits with interest calculated at the rate of 12% per annum. Subsequently, the third respondent Municipality seems to have paid interest only for one year by taking the responsibility that the delay caused by the Municipality is only for a limited period and disowned the responsibility for the entire delay caused to the petitioner for getting the retiral benefits. Only at this juncture, the petitioner has filed the present writ petition with the aforesaid prayer.
4. Heard Mr.Muthukumar, learned counsel appearing for the petitioner and Mr.Magesh, learned Special Government Pleader appearing for respondents 1, 2 and 5.
5. There has been a lot of inter-departmental communications between the authorities, ie., the respondents herein and ultimately the fifth respondent ie., the Director of Local Fund Audit Accounts Department, vide his letter dated 19.06.2008 has stated the following.
6. Also, a communication has been sent by the third respondent Municipality through the Regional Director of Municipal Administration, Vellore, who also was the Commissioner-in-charge of the third respondent Municipality, to the second respondent ie., Commissioner of Municipal Administration, Chennai. In his letter, he has stated the following.
7. Therefore, from the above communications, it has become clear that, the third respondent Municipality sought for clarification from the second respondent, as to by whom the 12% interest is to be calculated and paid to the petitioner for the belated payment of the retiral benefits and in this regard, once the clarification is issued by the second respondent, certainly based on the same, the authority concerned especially the third respondent Municipality would take further action to pay the interest.
8. In view of the aforesaid stand taken by the third respondent Municipality, where they sought for clarification from the second respondent and till date no clarification seems to have been given by the second respondent in this regard in response to the clarification sought for by the third respondent vide their letter dated 02.05.2009, as has been quoted above, this Court feels that, a suitable direction can be given to the second respondent to give a clarification in this regard, based on which the concerned authority especially the third respondent can act upon to pay interest to the petitioner for the belated payment of retiral benefits.
9. In view of the aforesaid, this writ petition is disposed of with the following order.
(a) That the second respondent ie., Commissioner of Municipal Administration is hereby directed to give necessary clarification as to by which authority the interest has to be paid to the petitioner for belated payment of retiral benefits, as already directed by the Tribunal and such a clarification shall be issued by the second respondent within a period of four weeks from the date of receipt of a copy of this order.
(b) On receipt of such clarification, the third respondent Municipality shall act upon and if the third respondent Municipality is directed to pay interest in the clarification to be made by the second respondent, the third respondent Municipality shall pay the interest to the petitioner for the belated payment of retiral benefits within eight weeks thereafter.
(c) In case the
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second respondent indicate by fixing the responsibility to any other authority for paying the interest for the belated payment of retiral benefits to the petitioner, such authority shall also act upon as per the clarification to be made by the second respondent as indicated above, and accordingly calculate the interest and pay the same to the petitioner within the time as stipulated herein above. 10. With the above directions, this writ petition is disposed of. No costs.