Saturday, December 13, 2008

ESM: Latest CDA Pension goof ups

Don’t ask me how this happened. Don’t even try to rack your brain; you’ll come to a big nought.

Govt of India, Ministry of Defence, had issued the pension sanction letter for pre-2006 pensioners on 11 November 2008. The said Govt letter covered both PBOR as well as officers. Pension fixation tables based on old basic pension and rank were also enclosed with this letter. As we all know by now, basic pension is either to be fixed by

Multiplying the old basic pension by 2.26 OR @ 50% of lower end of pay band + Grade Pay + MSP whichever of the two is higher.

An annexure (Annexure-II) was also enclosed with the letter dated 11 Nov 08 which detailed the calculation based on the second option for different ranks. By way of the second option, the pension of Major Generals and Lt Generals was coming to be lower than that of Brigadiers (Rs 26150) since MSP is not admissible to Maj Gens and Lt Gens. As a result, the pension for Maj Gens and Lt Gens was also stepped up to Brig level because as per policy, senior ranks cannot be placed in lower pension grades than a junior rank. Consequently, as per Annexure-II of the letter, the pensions for the ranks of Brig, Maj Gen and Lt Gen were all placed at Rs 26150 and the same was correctly reflected in Annexure-II of the Govt letter.

The Principal Controller of Defence Accounts (Pensions) or PCDA(P) in short, has also floated detailed guidelines to all banks across India alongwith the said Govt letter dated 11 Nov 2008 but surprisingly, the Annexure-II attached with the said letter in the PCDA(P) circular is different than the one released by the Govt. Same letter but different pension scales!

To take an example, in Annexure-II of the Govt letter dated 11 Nov 2008, the pension of Brigs, Maj Gens and Lt Gens is mentioned as Rs 26150 after completion of 28+ years of service. However it is mentioned as Rs 26150 for Brig but Rs 24566 for Maj Gen and Lt Gen in the same Annexure-II of the same Govt letter dated 11 Nov 2008 forwarded by PCDA(P) to banks. There are many other inconsistencies too.

You don’t believe me? Click here to have a look at this. The table on the top is the one enclosed with the actual govt letter and the table on the bottom is the table of the same govt letter floated to banks with a covering circular from the PCDA(P).

Don’t believe me still. OK, then download the pre-2006 pensioners Govt Letter No 17(4)/2008(1)/D(Pen/Policy) Dated 11 November 2008 from the official Ministry of Defence website at click here and then download the same letter from the PCDA(P) website at click here

Now compare the two and take a look at Annexure-II at Page 93, can you spot the difference? And again, please don’t ask me how this happened! I have no explanation whatsoever. Do not also ask me as to what happened to the direction of Govt of India vide Para 22 of the letter which ordained 'immediate' and 'expeditious' payment to pensioners. Of course all this is not deliberate, but lack of application of mind or lack of coordination, whatever, take your pick!
Posted by Navdeep / Maj Navdeep Singh at 6:46
Great, now CDA authorities goof up and they goof up well– they send incorrect pension tables to banks!

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