6 Jul 2008, 0226 hrs IST, A Subramani,TNN
CHENNAI: What is the legal status of a child born to a couple before their marriage? Is he legitimate or illegitimate in the eyes of law? And is the child eligible for a job on compassionate grounds in case of the death of a parent while in service?
Settling these issues, a division bench of the Madras High Court has held that in matters of compassionate appointments, the law speaks only about the child and does not specify whether it is legitimate or illegitimate.
The bench comprising Justice S J Mukhopadhaya and Justice V Dhanapalan, quoting Supreme Court rulings, said: “Though the marriage is said to be irregular, children born out of such marriage would be entitled to claim the benefits of their parent.”
The object of appointment of a dependent of a deceased employee who dies in harness, is to relieve the immediate hardship and distress caused to the family by the sudden demise of an earning member of the family, the bench noted during a hearing last Wednesday.
The matter relates to the appointment of H Anwar Basha as junior assistant in the Tamil Nadu Judicial Ministerial Service. He was appointed to the post in 1992 after his father, Shaik Hyder, died while working in the principal district munsif court in Villupuram in August 1991.
However, in 1999, the paternal uncle of Basha lodged a complaint, stating that Basha was not the son of Shaik Hyder and that he was born to one Gaffar. Following the High Court’s direction, disciplinary proceedings were initiated against Basha, and it culminated in his removal from service in June 2002. The fact that Basha was born in 1966 whereas his parents got married only in 1975 worked against him.