O.A. No. 105 of 2016. Case: Vinodkumar K. Vs Union of India and Ors.. Armed Forces Tribunal

Case Number:O.A. No. 105 of 2016
Party Name:Vinodkumar K. Vs Union of India and Ors.
Counsel:For Appellant: Bindumol Joseph and B.S. Syamanthak, Advs. and For Respondents: M. Rajendra Kumar, Senior Panel Counsel
Judges:S.S. Satheesachandran, Member (J) and M.P. Muralidharan, Vice Admiral, AVSM and BAR, NM and Member (A)
Issue:Defence
Judgement Date:January 24, 2017
Court:Armed Forces Tribunal
 
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Order:

M.P. Muralidharan, Vice Admiral, AVSM and BAR, NM and Member (A), (Regional Bench, Kochi)

  1. The Original Application has been filed by Vinodkumar. K., No. 6931903, Ex Naik of Army Ordnance Corps seeking disability pension.

  2. The applicant was enrolled in the Army Ordnance Corps (AOC) on 21 December 1990 and was invalided out from service with effect from 21 October 2006 under Army Rules 13(3)III(iii) having been found medically unfit for further retention in service. The Invaliding Medical Board (IMB) assessed him to have the disability 'Recurrent Depressive Disorder (F 33.1)' which as assessed at 40% for life but it was considered as neither attributable to nor aggravated by military service (Annexure R5). The applicant was granted service pension.

  3. Smt. Bindumol Joseph, the learned counsel for the applicant submitted that the applicant at the time of his enrollment in December 1990 was found medically fit and no diseases were detected or noted at the time of his enrollment. The applicant was posted at various parts of India including Siachin Glacier. Due to stress and strain of military service he was hospitalised and was informed that he was suffering from psychiatric disorder. However the applicant was not handed over any medical papers and was only consuming medicine as prescribed by the Doctors. In September 2006 a Medical Board examined the applicant and found that he was suffering from Recurrent Depressive Disorder (Annexure A1). The applicant was subsequently examined by an Invaliding Medical Board in October 2006 (Annexure A2) and was invalided out of service with effect from 21 October 2006. His claim for disability pension was rejected stating that the disablement was not connected with military service.

  4. The learned counsel further submitted that the applicant thereafter preferred his first appeal (Annexure A3) against rejection of disability pension which was considered and rejected by the competent authority as his disability Recurrent Depressive Disorder was considered as neither attributable to nor aggravated by military service (Annexure A5/A6). The applicant thereafter preferred a second appeal (Annexure A7). Since nothing was heard from the respondents, the applicant submitted a series of reminders. Eventually the appeal was considered and rejected by the Second Appellate Committee (Annexure A13).

  5. The learned counsel submitted that the disability claim of the applicant had been rejected stating that the disability was neither attributable to nor aggravated by military service. However the applicant had no mental or other illnesses at the time of his enrollment and it was only due to the stress and strain of military service that the applicant developed the disability. The learned counsel further submitted that as evident from Annexure A2, the applicant had first depressive episode in mid 2004 which was nearly 12 years after he joined the Army. The Entitlement Rules for Casualty Pensionary Awards specify...

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