Scheme of Compassionate Appointment is a Concession and Cannot be Claimed as an Absolute Right: Madras High Court

The Madras High Court ruled that the Scheme of compassionate appointment is a concession and cannot be claimed as an absolute right.


The petitioner states that her father P.D.Mohanan, served as Driver and died, while he was in service. The mother of the writ petitioner was appointed on compassionate grounds. 

The mother was working in the respondent/Department and she also died. 

Again the petitioner submitted an application to provide appointment on compassionate ground. 

The said application submitted by the writ petitioner was withdrawn and again it was re-submitted. Thereafter, the petitioner filed the writ petition to consider the said application.


The single judge bench of Justice S. M. Subramaniam said that the Scheme being an exception, cannot be expanded for the purpose of providing appointments on compassionate grounds in a larger manner.

It was observed by the court that large scale compassionate appointment would result in infringement of the Fundamental Rights of the eligible citizen, who all are aspiring to secure public employment through open competitive process.

It was further observed that the Scheme of compassionate appointment being a concession, to be implemented in a restricted manner, so as to provide appointment only to the families, who all are genuinely in penurious circumstances and in this regard, the authorities competent are bound to conduct field inspections and ascertain the imminent circumstances, warranting an appointment on compassionate grounds.

“Once an application is filed by any one of the legal heirs of the deceased employee and the said legal heir becomes ineligible, it is not as if that other legal heir can submit an application irrespective of the length of time” the court said. 

The court stated that the very purpose and object of the scheme of compassionate appointment is to mitigate the circumstances arising on account of the sudden death of an employee. Therefore, the scheme cannot be expanded nor any consideration is to be shown on misplaced sympathy, which would result in denial of Fundamental Right to all other eligible candidates, who all are longing to secure public employment.

“All contradictory facts and circumstances reveal that the petitioner is not eligible for the compassionate appointment, moreover, several years lapsed from the date of death of the deceased employee and at this length of time seeking compassionate appointment cannot be extended to the writ petitioner” the court held. 

Case title: P.M.Manjusha v/s The Chief Commissioner of Central Excise, Chennai

Citation: W.P.No.28905 of 2017

Click here to read the Order/Judgment 

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