Government of India vs. Actual Name: SSS Pension Eligibility Case

The Government of India vs. Actual Name is a significant legal case revolving around the eligibility criteria for SSS Pension. The appellant, Government of India, contested the High Court decision allowing the writ petition of the respondent, Actual Name, who sought pension benefits under the SSSP Scheme. The case delves into the specifics of the pension scheme and the cut-off date for eligibility, raising crucial questions about the application of rules. Let’s explore the details of this intriguing legal battle.


  • The Government of India received a representation from various quarters for grant of pension to all participants of the Goa Liberation Movement, specifically those involved in the second phase from 1954-55.
  • Government of India decided to extend freedom fighter pension to participants from the second phase of the movement under the SSSP Scheme, 1980, through a Government Order in 2003.
  • The individual, who had applied for the State pension, was rejected in 2002 based on recommendations from the State.
  • The individual was later informed that his case had been granted State Pension in 2008 and therefore was ineligible for the SSS Pension under the relaxed criteria for the Goa Liberation Movement Phase-II.
  • Subsequently, the individual filed a writ petition in the High Court of Bombay, Goa at Panaji, seeking various reliefs including a declaration of entitlement to pension, a writ of mandamus directing consideration of his pension application, and quashing of certain communications from the Ministry of Home Affairs.
  • The High Court allowed the writ petition and directed the appellant to grant pension to the individual from 2008 onwards.
  • The appellant, Government of India, filed an appeal against the High Court judgment.
  • The appellant argued that specific procedures and conditions were required for eligibility for the SSSP Scheme, 1980.
  • Various communications were exchanged between the Government of India, the individual, and the Government of Goa regarding the pension application.
  • Committees were constituted to consider the individual’s case, with differing opinions on the eligibility for pension.
  • Frequent modifications and updates were made to the pension scheme rules and procedures over the years.
  • Legal arguments were put forth by the appellant and respondents during the proceedings before the High Court.
  • The Freedom Fighters pension eligibility cutoff date of 01.08.2002 was questioned.
  • Appellant did not provide any justification for the 01.08.2002 cutoff date.
  • The High Court accepted petitioner’s contentions as no specific denial or reply was filed by the appellant.
  • The condition of being in receipt of State Pension by 01.08.2002 was a key factor for eligibility.
  • The Scheme was to grant central pension to participants of the Goa Liberation Movement Phase-II.
  • The relaxation criteria under the Swatantrata Sainik Samman Pension Scheme, 1980 was discussed extensively.
  • Discussions included specific numbers of potential eligible freedom fighters from various states.
  • The scheme’s cutoff date was consciously fixed to avoid an overwhelming number of applications.
  • The fixed date of 01.08.2002 aimed to restrict eligibility to those already sanctioned the pension by that date.
  • The scheme’s approval involved deliberation on the significance of the cutoff date.

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  • The issue to be considered in the appeal is whether Actual Name was entitled to the grant of SSS Pension as per the scheme dated 17.02.2003 of the Government of India.
  • The key question is whether Actual Name meets the eligibility criteria outlined in the pension scheme.
  • The decision will hinge on a close examination of the scheme’s provisions and how they apply to Actual Name’s circumstances.

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  • The appellant argues that the High Court erred in allowing the writ petition of the respondent who did not meet the eligibility criteria for the SSSP Scheme.
  • The respondent’s counsel contends that the cut-off date of 01.08.2002 had no relevance to the object of the SSS Pension Scheme.
  • The respondent was granted State Pension only in 2008, after the introduction of the scheme in 2003, and thus did not fulfill the scheme’s condition.
  • There is a debate on the rationality of the cut-off date for the Goa Liberation Movement participants to be eligible for SSS Pension, with the appellant emphasizing the significance of the date.
  • The State of Goa rejected the respondent’s claim for State Pension in 2002 after due enquiry, but later approved it in 2007 under the reopened scheme.
  • The issue of fixing the cut-off date was consciously included in the scheme after deliberation, as evidenced by relevant records and notings.
  • The scheme intended to grant pensions to Freedom Fighters of Goa based on specific conditions they met.
  • Submission that the cut-off date of 01.08.2002 lacks intelligible differentia and nexus with the object sought to be achieved.
  • Argument that the cut-off date is arbitrary and should be struck down.

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  • Detention under the orders of the competent authority will be considered as imprisonment.
  • A person who became permanently incapacitated during firing or lathi charge is considered a freedom fighter under Rule 2(1) of the definition clause.
  • The Swatantrata Sainik Samman Pension Scheme, 1980 is a scheme of the Central Government for granting pensions to those who participated in the freedom movement of the country.
  • The eligibility criteria for the pension scheme include individuals whose property was confiscated or attached and sold due to participation in the freedom struggle, those who remained underground for more than six months under specific circumstances, and individuals who were interned in their homes or externed from their districts for a period of six months or more.
  • The Scheme was not open-ended and relaxation was granted to specific individuals receiving State pension by 01.08.2002.
  • Ministry of Home Affairs considering relaxing eligibility criteria for pension under the SSSP Scheme, 1980 for Goa Liberation Movement Phase II participants sanctioned by the State by 1.8.2002.
  • Request for authenticated list of freedom fighters sanctioned pension by State Govt. up to 1.8.2002 for further processing the proposal.
  • No authenticated record available for many freedom fighters due to lack of maintenance.
  • SSSP Scheme extended by relaxing conditions for Goa Liberation Phase II participants in 2003.
  • Date prescribed for applications under the Scheme seen as administrative convenience, not rigid time limit.
  • Central Govt. decided to relax conditions of eligibility under SSSP Scheme for Goa Liberation Movement participants.
  • Object of SSSP Scheme was to grant Central Pension to eligible individuals.
  • Extension of Scheme for Goa Liberation Movement considered since 2000 and implemented in 2003.
  • Central Pension granted to those eligible under Scheme, fulfilling the requirements.
  • Judgment of the High Court referred to and relied on the judgment of the Supreme Court in Mukund Lal Bhandari and Others Vs. Union of India and Others, (1993) supp. 3 SCC 2.
  • The judgment laid down by the Supreme Court was referred to in the case mentioned.
  • The Supreme Court judgment included an excerpt stating, ‘7. (text from the judgment)’
  • There was no error in rejecting the claim for grant of SSSP scheme as communicated in the letters dated 16.11.2009 and 13.11.2014.
  • The judgment in Mukund Lal Bhandari is distinguishable and cannot be applied to the present case.
  • The appellant should have produced relevant materials before the High Court for consideration, but relevant materials have been brought on record through an additional Affidavit.
  • This case cannot be compared to Mukund Lal Bhandari in regards to the rejection of the SSSP scheme claim.


  • The High Court appellant was not able to file a reply or present relevant facts and materials before the court.
  • As a result, the appeal was allowed and the writ petition of the respondent No.1 was dismissed.
  • The appeal decision was based on relevant materials brought on record, including the Government Scheme dated 17.02.2003, which was found to be without any infirmity.


Case Number: C.A. No.-000987-000987 / 2020

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