Extracts from IDR By Gp Capt AG Bewoor
Issue: Vol 26.1 Jan-Mar 2011 | Date: 21 March, 2011
The disdain for Indian Armed Forces, consistently demonstrated by the politico-bureaucratic-extra constitutional combine, is translated into negation of a justified demand for One Rank One Pension.
Disregard & Disinterest. The so called upper classes, elite, bureaucrats/technocrats/business entrepreneurs/rich professionals couldn’t care less about what the faujis do, what they get, how they manage their affairs and such tiresome issues. When they are safe, secure and successful, the fauj is irrelevant. Whether the material and emotional wherewithal given to the fauji and his family is adequate for maintenance of national security and safety, is far from their minds. They pay taxes and expect the Govt to ensure their security to generate wealth for themselves and India. They are not to be blamed for this indifference, because our politico/bureaucratic/extra-constitutional power centres have encouraged disinterest about matters military.
A Quick Perspective. Till the 60s, OROP was in vogue as Military Pension, and faujis got 65 percent of last pay because most had to retire in their late 40s/early 50s while civilians got 33 percent since all served up to 58 years. The 3rd PC abolished Military Pensions, reduced it to 50 percent, increased civil pensions to 50 percent, and added a proviso that to earn full pension a govt servant must serve for 33 years. Thus most military men seldom got full pension because very few could serve for 33 years, but the civil servants invariably got full pension because they served till the age of 58, getting them at least 33 years of service.
Look at the perfidy of this rule and the shabby treatment meted out to the Armed Forces? The Supreme Court has already declared that pension is, “delayed wages for services already rendered”. But look at it this way, Colonel Kapur who retired with 24 years of service at the age of 48 years in 1989, must get the same pension as Colonel Ghosh who retires today at the age of 50 years with 24 years of service. Why must Colonel Kapur have to beg for this, he is only seeking justice because he had to retire at a much younger age than his civilian contemporary who joined the IAS at the same time.
The civilian does not retire with only 24 years service at the age of 50 years, he carries on till the age of 60, and crosses that 33 year barrier. Recently the Supreme Court was constrained to rebuke the Govt for “treating soldiers like beggars”. Regrettably our media, so fond of sensationalism, has not cared to take up cudgels for the military, which provides and preserves that freedom of expression the media clamour for.
What Justifies the Military Demanding One Rank One Pension?
Does Honour, Izzat, Life Threatening Occupation Matter? It has been said that izzat, honour, life threatening occupation are irrelevant to pension. Let’s accept it. A recent comment on TV equated the danger to a fire-fighter to that of a soldier fighting terrorists. Ridiculous as it is, one fact is indisputable; the fire does not shoot bullets nor lobs grenades, at the fire-fighter. Further comparison is unnecessary. Notwithstanding the truth that a fauji’s occupational hazard is far severe than all other’s, and he braves those hazards for izzat, camaraderie, and honour of his unit, let’s not consider this factor for granting OROP. It is incomprehensible by non-military persons.
One Rank One Pension: an obligation to be fulfilled- By Gp Capt AG Bewoor
GOOD NEWS ABOUT PENURY GRANT
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