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Union Of India & Ors vs Angad Singh Titaria on 24 February, 2015
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Created page with "The facts of the case are that the respondent herein was enrolled in Indian Air Force on 13th November, 1971 in the Clerical trade. At the time of his recruitment, the respond..."
The facts of the case are that the respondent herein was enrolled in Indian Air Force on 13th November, 1971 in the Clerical trade. At the time of his recruitment, the respondent was medically and physically examined by the concerned medical officers and was found fit as per prescribed. During the period of his service in Indian Air Force, the respondent was admitted to the Commando Hospital Bangalore where he was diagnosed for coronary artery disease (1st disability). Then respondent was therefore placed in Low Medical Classification . As a result of deterioration of health due to aggravation of ailment, the respondent was again downgraded and placed in the medical classification (Permanent). While the respondent was discharging his , he was also diagnosed for the disease Type-II Diabetes (2nd disability). Thereafter, 2008 the respondent was referred to the Release Medical Board. The Medical Board assessed his 1st disability i.e. coronary artery disease at 60% and 2nd disability at 15 to 19%. The composite disability was however assessed as 60%. The Medical Board recommended that both the aforementioned disabilities were found to be constitutional in nature and not attributable to nor aggravated by service in Air Force. Accordingly, the disability pension claim preferred by the respondent has been rejected by the competent Pension Sanctioning Authority.
Aggrieved thereby, the respondent filed first appeal before the Appellate Committee. The first appellate authority rejected the same observing that both the disabilities are neither attributable to nor aggravated by service . The second appeal before Defence Minister's Appellate Committee was also rejected. The respondent filed in the Armed Forces Tribunal ("The Tribunal" for short) which came to be allowed directing the appellants to assess and release the disability element of disability pension in favour of the petitioner for 60% disability from the date of his discharge with interest @ 10% p.a. on the arrears.
There was a serious error by ignoring the opinion of tribunal. The record clearly shows that the onset of disabilities on the respondent was at peace locations as the respondent, at the relevant time, was not engaged in duty in high altitude areas or snow bound remote areas. He was not in war bound field area or undergoing intensive physical or arms training. The respondent was neither a prisoner of war nor exposed to adverse climatic conditions while performing his duties. Throughout his employment, the respondent has served in peace station. Therefore, there cannot be any stress or strain caused by the service which could have led to the onset of the disabilities. The Medical Board has clearly and categorically observed that the disabilities of the respondent were "not connected with service" and hence they do not fall under the category of "either attributable to or aggravated by Air Force Service" which is a prerequisite for granting disability pension.
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