Rajasthan High Court: In a case filed by the second wife (petitioner 1) of deceased who was a class IV employee in the respondent-department, challenging rejection order, rejecting his son (petitioner 2) for compassionate appointment, Kuldeep Mathur, J., held that consideration under Rajasthan Compassionate Appointment of Dependents of Deceased Government Servants Rules, 1996 for compassionate appointment cannot be denied to petitioner 2, on the ground of his being son of the second wife of the deceased employee.
The impugned order arises from an application filed by petitioner 1 seeking compassionate appointment as per the Rules, 1996 which was thereby rejected on the ground that she is not legally wedded wife of the deceased employee. Later, a representation was submitted by petitioner 2 seeking compassionate appointment which was also rejected on the ground that petitioner 2, being the son of second wife is not entitled for appointment on compassionate grounds.
Placing reliance on Union of India v. V.R. Tripathi, (2019) 14 SCC 646, wherein it was observed that
“A second marriage contracted by a Hindu during the subsistence of the first marriage is, therefore, null and void. However, the legislature has stepped in by enacting Section 16(1) to protect the legitimacy of a child born from such a marriage. Subsection (3) of Section 16, however, stipulates that such a child who is born from a marriage which is null and void, will have a right in the property only of the parents and none other than the parents.”
The Court noted that a policy for compassionate appointment, which has the force of law, must not discriminate on any of the grounds mentioned in Article 16(2), including that of descent. In this regard, descent must be understood to encompass the familial origins of a person. Familial origins include the validity of the marriage of the parents of a claimant of compassionate appointment and the claimant’s legitimacy as their child.
The Court directed the respondents to consider the case of petitioner 2 for compassionate appointment, in accordance with the Rules of 1996 for providing compassionate appointment to him, if he fulfills all other requirements.
[Chandra Devi v. State of Rajasthan, 2022 SCC OnLine Raj 1822, decided on 21-09-2022]
Advocates who appeared in this case :
Mr. Dron Kaushik, Advocate, for the Petitioner(s);
Ms. Saloni Malpani for Ms. Abhilasha Bora, Advocates, for the Respondent(s).
*Arunima Bose, Editorial Assistant has put this report together.