The Chandigarh consumer forum has directed the Employees’ State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) to pay the service benefits of an industrial worker to his widow after her claim was rejected on the ground that her husband died a natural death at work.
Tara Devi of Ramdarbar said her husband Kamal Singh Thakur was insured with ESIC. On May 26, 2016, Thakur, an operator with Wilson Industries in Industrial Area, Chandigarh, suddenly collapsed while working on a machine. His colleagues Ranjan Kumar and Prem Bandu immediately took him to the ESIC Hospital at Sector 29, Chandigarh, where he was declared brought dead.
Tara Devi submitted in her plea that after her husband died, she had submitted a representation to ESIC for pension as her husband died in harness but it was denied. It was in March this year. ESIC replied that Thakur”s death was natural and not out of injury during employment and the manner in which he died does not qualify as an accident/injury in course of employment.
It was stated that the final opinion of cause of death of the victim stated that it was acute coronary insufficiency due to pre-existing Cardiomyopathy (Hypertrophic type) and thus the claim of the complainant was rejected as the death of the deceased could not be considered as accident or injury while working.
Prem Bandu, Thakur’s colleague, said the man while working on a machine on May 26, 2016, suddenly fell down and was taken to hospital where he was declared brought dead. In fact, Thakur had been at the machine since morning and after six to seven hours of continuous physical grind, he collapsed. Thakur was overstressed and could not cope with work pressure and therefore, he collapsed leading to his instant death.
The forum, after considering the facts and arguments, said Thakur’s widow was entitled to all the benefits permissible under The Employees State Insurance Act, 1948, and rejection of genuine claim of the complainant was unjustified and illegal.
So, the forum, in its order released on September 13, directed ESIC to release all admissible service benefits to Tara Devi on account of Thakur”s death and also pay a compensation of Rs 15,000 along with litigation charges of Rs 7,000.