Married man's parents can get death compensation
CHENNAI: There is nothing wrong in paying a part of compensation paid for the death of an industrial work, to the parents of the deceased, Madras high court has held.
Justice S Vaidyanathan, rejecting arguments of the victim's wife who claimed that the money ought to have been paid to her and her major children alone, said: "Since children of the deceased have completed 18 years of age and attained majority, there is a bar to treat them as dependents of the deceased employee. Moreover, this court finds nothing wrong in adding the parents of the deceased as dependents."
Even assuming, for the sake of argument, that children of the deceased employee had to be treated as dependents, the compensation sum will have to be apportioned from the share payable to the children's mother and not from the amount payable to the parents of the deceased employee, Justice Vaidyanathan said.
The case relates to the death of Subramaniyan who, while working as machine operator at Sakthi Sugar Mills in Sivagangai, suffered a grave injury and subsequently died on the injuries suffered in the course of employment.
Invoking Section 22 of the Workmen Compensation Act, an award of 5.75 had been passed by the designated Tribunal. Based on a report of the inquiry officer appointed by the deputy commissioner of labour to ascertain the real dependents of the deceased employee, children of the deceased had been excluded from the array of dependents and the father and mother of the deceased were included as dependents.
It is against their inclusion that his wife Thilagavathi filed the present petition in court. During arguments, it came to light Thilagavathi did not live with the deceased for at least two years before the industrial accident, and that it was his father who spent money for medical expenses.
Citing this, Justice Vaidyanathan said the authorities' decision was perfectly valid in the eye of law.