SC seeks Centre’s views on ‘unequal pension’ to judges

New Delhi: The Supreme Court has sought the response of Department of Justice on a plea highlighting inequalities in the payment of pension to service judges against those elevated from the Bar.

The top court was hearing a plea of a retired judge of Madras High Court Justice M Vijayaraghavan, seeking ‘one rank, one pension’ in the judiciary.

The plea has contended that judges of the high court who are promoted from a state’s subordinate judiciary are entitled to a lesser pension than a judge who was previously an advocate.

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Justice Vijayaraghavan has sought to rectify the disparities in the pension contending that the present formula to calculate pensions for high court judges who come from lower courts was discriminatory and arbitrary.

Taking note of his plea, a bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, Justice L Nageswara Rao and Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul on Wednesday said: “Before we examine the contentions advanced, we would like the Department of Justice, Government of India, to examine the matter and place its views of the issue. These petitions highlight the perceived inequalities in the matter of payment of pension to service judges as compared to Bar judges.”

The bench further directed the Department of Justice to also consider the aspect of difference in pension paid to service judges appointed to the high court who come from two different streams-direct recruit district judges and promotee district judges.


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