the dispute before the Employees' Insurance Court. He said the insured died of heart failure and he was working as a Fitter in the Company and could not have died due to natural causes related to stress and strain of work.
ESIS Counsel argued that circumstances must exist to establish that death was caused by reason of failure of heart because of stress and strain of work and heart attack does not give rise to automatic presumption. Also, there was no medical evidence to indicate that the cause of death was on account of stress and strain.
The high court noted, "It is not the case of the respondents (ESIS) that the petitioner's husband was previously suffering from heart related disease. The entire defence of the respondents is that the petitioner's husband died due to heart attack and it is not an employment injury."
Besides, there is no evidence produced to rebut the presumption that the death has arisen out of the employment. Even the Senior State Medical Commissioner on whose opinion is relied upon by the Respondent has just stated "it is a natural death, there is no involvement of stress and strain of work." It is just a cryptic opinion, said the bench.
The Judges held that the death of the petitioner's husband has happened only during the course of the employment and in the factory premises/rest room. The petitioner is therefore, entitled to get the dependents' benefits.
In view of these findings, the High Court set aside the impugned communication of ESIS dated May 14, 2012, which rejected the request of the petitioner to treat her husband's death as an employment injury.
The bench directed ESIS to settle the eligible dependents benefits in favour of the petitioner in accordance with law within a period of four weeks.