Encourage Disabled Staff to Continue in Service: Govt to Departments

New Delhi

All government departments should try to retain the services of any employees seeking voluntary retirement on medical grounds or citing disability, the Centre has said.

The Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995, or the PWD Act, states that no establishment shall dispense with the services of an employee who acquires a disability during the course of service.

It has been decided that whenever a government servant seeks voluntary retirement citing medical grounds or due to disability, administrative authorities shall advise him or her about the option of continuing in service with the same pay scale and service benefits, said an order issued by Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT).

"If however, despite being so advised, such government servant still wishes to take voluntary retirement, the request may be processed," it added.

Citing the Act, the DoPT said that no establishment shall dispense with or reduce in rank an employee who acquires a disability during service.

"If an employee, after acquiring disability, is not suitable for the post he was holding, (he or she) could be shifted to some other post with the same pay scale and service benefits," the order said.

"No promotion shall be denied to a person merely on the grounds of disability," it says.

DoPT has in draft guidelines said that it has been noticed that in many instances, persons suffering from physical or mental disability seek voluntary retirement owing to inability to attend to duty and not being aware of the protection afforded to them by the PWD Act.

"They need to be informed about the protection available to them under the Act and must be encouraged to continue work," a senior DoPT official said.

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