Rs.2300 crore approved to meet the demands of Ex-servicemen pensioners

The Union Cabinet has approvedthe recommendations of the Committee headed by Cabinet Secretary for benefits to ex-servicemen on four issues.   The financial implications of the improvements made as per the Cabinet decision on the four items are broadly estimated at Rs.2300 crore per annum.  The details are as follows:

  1. I.             One Rank One Pension:

On One Rank One Pension, the demand of the Defence Forces and Ex-Servicemen Associations is that uniform pension be paid to the Defence Forces personnel retiring in the same rank with the same length of service irrespective of their date of retirement and any future enhancement in the rates of pension be automatically passed on to the past pensioners.

The difference in the pension of present and past pensioners in the same rank occurs on account of the number of increments earned by the defence personnel in that rank.  There is also a difference between the pension of pre 1.1.06 and post 1.1.06 retirees belonging to a particular rank.  The UPA Government on two previous occasions has taken decisions to narrow the gap between the present and past pensioners, particularly those belonging to the ranks of JCOs and Other Ranks.

On the issue of One Rank One Pension, the following have been approved by the Cabinet:

(i)         Bridging of the gap in the pension of pre 1.1.06 and post 1.1.06 JCO/OR retirees by determining the pension of pre 1.1.06 retirees on the basis of notional maximum for ranks and groups across the three Services as in the case of post 1.1.06 retirees.  In addition, the weightage of qualifying service in the ranks of Sepoys, Naik and Havaldar would be increased by two years for both pre and post 1.1.06 retirees.

(ii)        The pension of pre 1.1.06 Commissioned Officer pensioners would be stepped up with reference to the minimum of fitment table for the ranks instead of the minimum of pay band.

These are expected to largely meet the demands of the defence pensioners on one rank one pension.

  1. II.                   Enhancement of Family Pension :

 (i)                   The pension of pre – 1.1.2006 family pensioners(Commissioned Officers, Honorary Commissioned Officers, JCOs/ORs ) be stepped up based on the minimum of the fitment table instead of the minimum of the Pay Band;

(i)            Establishing linkage of the family pension with the pension of JCOs/ORs, in those cases where the death takes place after the retirement of the JCO/OR since such a JCO/OR drew a pension based on the maximum of the pay scales, 60% of the pension applicable to JCO/OR pensioners would be granted to the family pensioner in case of normal family pension calculated a 30% of last pay drawn. Accordingly, based on the rank, group and length of service of the deceased JCO/OR pensioner, his pension would first be determined on notional basis. In cases where death of JCO/OR took place after retirement, the family pensioners in receipt of normal family pension would become entitled to 60% of the said pension determined on notional basis and those in receipt of enhanced family pension will be entitled to 100% of this pension. Similar entitlements would be determined in the case of Special Family Pension; and

(ii)                 The family pensioner of the JCO/OR would be granted pension arrived at on the basis of the family pension worked out as per the formulation at (i) above or the pension on the basis of stepping up with reference to the minimum of the fitment table, whichever is beneficial. Further, the linkage of family pension with retiring pension be applied in the case of post 1.1.2006 family pensioners of JCOs/ORs also.

 III.           Dual Family Pension:

Dual family pension would be allowed in the present and future cases where the pensioner drew, is drawing or may draw pension for military service as well as for civil employment.

IV.          Family pension to mentally / physically challenged children of armed forces personnel on marriage:

Grant of family pension to mentally/physically challenged children who drew, are drawing or may draw family pension would continue even after their marriage.

The above recommendations made by the Committee on pension issues of Ex-Servicemen may be implemented from a prospective date and payment made accordingly.

Source: PTI

Service pension for Other Ranks shall now be the following:

Add two years in the existing tables which can be accessed by clicking here. For example, to get to know the basic pension  now admissible at 15 years, the amount reflected at 17 years may be seen.

To give an illustration a  GP.I Sergeant retired prior to 01.01.2006 with 15 years of service will now be eligible for a basic pension of Rs 6015/- instead of his existing basic pension of 5519/-( 5492/- shown in the table 111 but stepped up with reference to Gr I LAC’s pension wef 01.07.2009).

Result of Meeting held on 18th July for One Rank One Pension

On 18th July 2012, the three service chiefs, led by Admiral Nirmal Verma, Chairman Chiefs of Staff Committee (CoSC) met with a high-powered Committee of Secretaries constituted by the Prime Minister to resolve anomalies in the implementation of the Sixth Pay Commission award for the Armed Forces.

Although a total of 39 anomalies have been identified by the three services since 2008, they have decided to concentrate on some core issues that directly affect both serving and retired armed forces personnel.

The issues are:

Fixing common pay scales for all JCOs and ORs

Source: NDTV

  • Grant of NFU (non-functional upgradation) status to commissioned officers
  • Correcting difference in rank pay of commissioned officers
  • Extending the HAG+ (Higher administrative Grade Plus) scale to all three star officers
  • Granting One-Rank-One-Pension to retired personnel

There have been strong demands from ex-servicemen and from acting servicemen for One-Rank-One-Pay. And to push for their demands further, the three Service chiefs, led by Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee, Naval chief Admiral Nirmal Verma, along with his colleagues, Chief of Air Staff ACM, NAK Browne and Army Chief General Bikram Singh gave a detailed presentation to the Committee of Secretaries on Wednesday.

The six-member committee, comprising the Cabinet Secretary with the Defence Secretary, Secretary Ex-Servicemen Welfare, Secretary DoPT, Expenditure Secretary and Principal Secretary to PM, as members  was set up by the Prime Minister after a Rajya Sabha panel last year recommended granting One Rank One Pension to the retired defence personnel. The government has asked the committee to submit its report by August 8.

There is a buzz in the corridors of power that the Prime Minister wants to make a grand announcement from the ramparts of the Red Fort on August 15 and therefore the deadline of August 8!

For the uninitiated, the One-Rank-One-Pay scheme implies that uniform pension be paid to the armed forces personnel retiring in the same rank with the same length of service irrespective of their date of retirement, and any future enhancement in the rates of pension be automatically passed on to past pensioners.

But the issue that has upset and angered serving defence personnel is NFU.

For those not in uniform it needs a bit of an explanation.

Buckling under pressure from Group A organised Services under the Central Government like Border Roads Organisation, Military Engineering Services, Postal Services, the Sixth Pay Commission gave them a special concession.

It allowed the officers in these services to be placed in a grade pay scale equivalent to an IAS officer two years behind that particular IAS batch. For example if the 1992 batch of the IAS officer got placed in the Joint Secretary grade in 2012, all Group A organised officers of the 1990 batch would automatically get the pay and allowance equivalent to the 1992 IAS batch, irrespective of the post and place they are serving in. That is the upgradation will be done on a ‘non-functional’ basis.

This has brought in huge functional problems in day-to-day affairs when military officers have to work in close coordination with MES Civil Officers, BRO Civil Officers, IPS Officers in BSF, CRPF, ITBP, Defence Accts (IDAS), Test Audit (IA&AS), Ordnance Factory Board etc, with whom Defence forces officers interact regularly, will now get the salary and grade pay of Joint Secretary/Major General (Grade Pay Rs. 10000/-) after 22 years of service, and will draw the pay of Additional Secretary to Government of India which is equal to a Lieutenant General (Grade Pay Rs. 12000/-) in 32 years of service whereas military officers senior to them in rank and service will get less grade pay at the same level of service thereby creating a functional disparity giving rise to insubordination and subtle non-compliance.

Military officials have pointed out that this has adversely affected organisational command and control in multi-cadre environment. It also led to lowering the status of Armed Forces Officials vis-a-vis organized Group A officers and IPS Officers. Organized Group A and IPS Officers reach HAG (Higher Administrative Grade) Scale at 32 years while only 0.2 per cent of Armed Forces Officers can ever reach that level.

With over 97 per cent Armed Forces Officers retiring in the Grade Pay of 8700, their exclusion from the NFU is seen as grossly unfair. This differential not only disturbs financial parity, it pushes down the Defence services in status as even direct recruit officers of Group B services attain a better pay and promotional avenue and manage to reach the level of Joint Secretary/Major General before retiring.

Both the OROP and granting the NFU status to Armed Forces officials is not going to be expensive either.

According to calculations done by the military, the annual outgo for granting One -Rank-One-Pension to the approximately 21 lakh ex-servicemen would not be more than Rs. 1300 crore. Similarly the NFU status, if granted, will cost the exchequer a mere Rs. 70 crore annually but will go a long way in restoring the pride and status of the armed forces’ officers.

The other core issues are minor in comparison but important nevertheless.

 

Rajyasabha committee on petitions recommend OROP to Armed Forces Personnel.

The Rajya Sabha  committee on petitions, submitted it’s 14 pages report on the One Rank One Pension(OROP) to Armed Forces Personnel, on 19th December 2011. The committee in it’s report, “strongly recommends that Government should implement OROP in the defence forces across the board at the earliest”. They have also recommended for constitution of  separate pay commission for Armed Forces Personnel in future.

To download the said Rajya Sabha petitions committee report dated 19th December 2011 CLICK HERE.