Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Presentation: Petitions Committee on OROP

Hello All,
Here is an update of the meeting that Sanjay Prabhu, Rohit and myself had with Rajya Sabha Committee on Petitions on OROP last week:
Presentation to the Petitions Committee on OROP, May 04th, 2011 – Highlights of the Meeting
Rajya Sabha Members Present
  • Bhagat Singh Koshyari, Chairman
  • Ram Vilas Paswan
  • P Rajeeve
  • Nandi Yelliah
  • Paul Manoj Pandian
  • Avinash Pande
    From our side
  • Sanjay Prabhu
  • Anand
  • Rohit Nair (Bangalore Patriots Society)
    Highlights of the Meeting
  • The Meeting started with a brief invitation by Chairman of Committee and purpose of the meeting. He acknowledged that the role and sacrifices made by the defense personnel.
  • This was followed by our presentation which lasted about 10-12 minutes.
  • The theme of the presentation was emotional highlighting the courage, bravery and sacrifices of the Armed forces personnel and how this was an affront to the brave soldiers.
  • It also focused on how there was strong support for OROP from all sections of society – citizens, Parliamentary Committees, Political parties etc ( we read out quotes by past PMs and current political leaders who favoured OROP, Supreme Court and the Parliamentary Committee )
  • The Members were in agreement on slides which showed how other countries treated their soldiers in a far more dignified manner than India; and when support of politial parties was assured for OROP
    Feedback from Members
  • There were 3-4 innocuous queries from the Committee to us – about how many veterans will be benefitted ; will civilians officers object etc – which were part answered by Chairman himself and us as per the presentation.
  • P Rajeev and Ram Vilas Paswan were the members who raised queries. Others were quiet and made notes.
  • Before the meeting concluded, Chairman thanked us for a “fine and excellent presentation” that “conveyed out points clearly” and said they will call Veterans, Government and other petitioners to hear their points of view.
    Additional Opportunity
  • We landed an excellent opportunity to interact with the Chairman and Members of the Committee when they joined us for Tea.
  • We spent quality 20 minutes of informal interaction about OROP and related issues with the Members.
  • Chairman Koshyari seemed particularly happy with our presentation and said the Committee is keen to do justice to veterans and will arrive at a consensus on that. He will also be inviting Ex-servicemen, Serving Defense personnel and the Civilian bureaucracy.
  • Nandi Yelliah said there were no issues to implement OROP, except perhaps the financial obligations.
  • Rajeeve said he will support OROP.
  • Ram Vilas Paswan was the most emphatic of the lot. He said “he is aware of the issue and hurdles put by babus who don’t see the bodies of soldiers arriving at Palam”. He said the “Committtee will not make recommendations but ensure fulfillment.”
    What Next
    Anand will brief Lt Gen Kadyan on the meeting details so that they can depose with the knowledge of expectations and the kind of reaction to expect from the Committee. Regards,
    V. Anand
    Principal- Public Affairs,
    Office of Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Member of Parliament
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