At least 5,000 Central Government employees have died during the past more than one year due to Covid-19 virus infection. A large number belongs to Railways and Defence. Many of them were working as frontline warriors and were actually deoployed on duty during the Covid-19 lockdown period. A large number of them are in the age group between 30 to 50.
The Trade Unions of Central Government Employees are demanding for ex-gratia payment to their families and also out of turn compassionate appointment to the wards of such deceased employees. The Staffside of the National Council(JCM) have already raised this demand in the National Council(JCM) meeting held on 26/06/2021. Another meeting was convened by the Secretary/DOP&T to discuss various issues including Covid-19 related issues on 30/07/2021.
On behalf of the staff side Shiva Gopal Mishra, Secretary/Staff side submitted a representation by hand to the Secretary/DOP&T demanding for immediate compassionate appointment to the wards of Covid-19 victims over and above the normal 5% ceiling limit. Shiva Gopal Mishra has brought to the notice of the Govt. in the death certificates issued by the state governments, the reason for death is not mentioned as Covid-19 and hence the death of the employees which has happened during the Covid-19 pandemic period should be treated as death due to Covid-19 pandemic. www.indiapsu.com accessed a copy of the letter dated 30/07/2021 addressed to the Secretary/DOP&T written by Shiva Gopal Mishra secretary of the National Council(JCM). The contents of the letter is given here for the benefit of the viewers of www.indianpsu.com –
The staffside in the 48th meeting of the National Council – JCM held under the Chairmanship of Cabinet Secretary demanded that a large number of Central Government Employees succumbed to death due to Covid-19 virus infection and hence an out of turn compassionate appointment over and above the normal 5% quota for grant of compassionate appointment may be considerd favourably. Secretary /DOP&T stated in the meeting that data in this regard is being collected from different departments and the matter would be examine thereafter. The office of the Staff side are also taking efforts to collect the data in this regard from various Ministry and Departments.
It has been brought to our notice that many of the State Governments while issuing Death Certificate to the persons who died due to Covid-19 virus infection treatment and post Covid treatment etc. are not mentioning in the death certificate the reason for death. In some cases it is mentioned that the death was due to other reasons such as cardia arrest, lungs failure, internal bleeding and pneumonia etc. In very few cases only the reason for death is given as Covid-19 positive.
You are aware that the Government of India has notified that the Covid-19 virus spread is a National pandemic. It is also declared as a notified disaster so as to provide relief from the State Disaster Response fund (SDRF). Persons infected due to Covid-19 virus died due to various reasons such as non-availability of beds in the hospitals waiting in long queues inside the Ambulance, no supply or short supply of oxygen, non-availability of ventilators, non-availability of life saving medicine and in many cases due to delay in testing the patients etc. apart from this many patients died after becoming Covid-19 negative due to post Covid-19 treatment complications.
In view of the above situations to avoid any ambiguity, it will be prudent to treat the death of the employees between 14th March 2020 and the date of issue of Government orders in this regard to as deemed to be due to the cause of Covid-19 pandemic and compassionate appointment may be granted to the dependents as a part of relief under the National Disaster Management Act. This relief should be over and above the 5% ceiling fixed for compassionate appointment to the regular death cases.