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Delhi LG rejects Kejriwal’s compensation file

Kejriwal’s proposal was cleared by the Delhi cabinet in December

Gulf News

New Delhi: Delhi Lieutenant Governor (LG) Anil Baijal on Thursday rejected Chief Minister (CM) Arvind Kejriwal’s proposal to award a compensation of Rs10 million (Dh549,951) to the family of an ex-serviceman who committed suicide last year over non-implementation of central government’s One Rank One Pension (OROP) scheme.

“This specific case does not fall within the parameters of the scheme for grant of ex gratia payment i.e. death occurring in the discharge of official duty. Therefore, while I fully sympathise with the family of Subedar (Retd) Late Ram Kishen Grewal, I am not able to agree to the proposal for payment of ex gratia relief in this case,” Baijal said in the file noting.

Kejriwal’s proposal was cleared by the Delhi cabinet in December last year. The state government had also granted status of martyr to Grewal.

According to high level sources in the LG’s office, Baijal rejected the file because Grewal’s death did not occur in line of duty.

“Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal rejected the proposal because clearly giving compensation to Ram Kishen Grewal is not in line with the policy to provide ex gratia to ex-servicemen. Mr Grewal died by consuming poison. Hence, no compensation can be given in this case,” sources told Gulf News.

In Delhi, ex gratia payment is made in cases of defence, paramilitary forces, Home Guard, Delhi Police, Delhi Fire Service personnel dying in discharge of official duty.

According to Delhi state government rules, the domicile of any individual being granted with ex gratia is also important.

The person should either be serving with any agency in Delhi at the time of death, or be a resident of the national capital at the time of joining service.

Sources said Grewal was not associated in any service with the Delhi Government nor was he a resident of the national capital.

“Grewal was a resident of Bhiwani, Haryana. He committed suicide on November one last year over immediate implementation of OROP at Delhi’s Jantar Mantar. The chief minister immediately announced a compensation of Rs10 million for his family. He should have considered the basic rules in this regard,” they added.

In his file note, Baijal also mentioned the issue of deficient domicile.

“The person has to be either working with the government of Delhi/Delhi Police or have his permanent address recorded at the time of joining service as Delhi in case of defence/paramilitary personnel. The situations that qualify for ex- gratia payment are well defined in the scheme,” the LG said.

Interestingly, reacting to the development, the CM on Thursday slammed Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi.

“Prime Minister Narendra Modi is anti-soldier. Modi himself does not provide good food to soldiers and when we are trying to help the family of the deceased soldier, why is he stopping us,” he tweeted.