TN shall consider revising pension for visually impaired: HC

The petitioners also prayed for shifting the pension scheme from the social welfare department to the differently abled welfare department
Madras High Court
Madras High CourtFile

CHENNAI: The Madras High Court directed the State to consider revising the monthly pension amount for visually impaired persons who are incapable of getting employment.

The first bench of Acting Chief Justice M Duraiswamy and Justice Sunder Mohan further held that the monthly pension amount need not be increased for visually impaired people who are in a position to get the job.

The judges passed the orders on disposing of a petition filed by Nethrodaya – an NGO working for the visually impaired section. The petitioner NGO sought direction to the State government to increase the monthly pension for all the visually impaired people from Rs.1,000 to Rs.1,500 on par with the maintenance allowance of Rs.1,500 given to the other differently-abled persons.

S Silambannan, Additional Advocate General, informed the court that the maintenance amount has been increased from Rs.1,500 to Rs.2,000 for people with disabilities and not in a position to do any work and the same cannot be extended to all the visually impaired persons.

Recording the submissions, the judges held that they cannot direct the respondents to treat all the differently abled persons under the visually impaired category on par with differently-abled persons who are incapable of any employment, the bench ruled.

It further ordered that t certain persons who are visually impaired are also ineligible for employment on account of other illnesses, infirmity, and old age, the respondents may consider the request of those persons to treat them on par with other differently-abled persons who are getting the monthly maintenance allowance, on merits and in accordance with the law.

The petitioners also prayed for shifting the pension scheme from the social welfare department to the differently abled welfare department.

Responding to this, the government informed that revenue divisional officers have been appointed as designated officers to deal with the issue.]

The judges expressed that they could not pass orders to shift the pension scheme from one department to another. However, they held that the social welfare department should ensure that no hardships are caused to the differently abled persons for getting the benefits under the monthly pension scheme.

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