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Friday, September 18, 2009
OPEN LETTER TO HONOURABLE R M REQUESTING FOR SUBSTANTIAL IMPROVEMENT/PARITY IN PENSIONS OF PRE-1.1.06 PBOR RETIREES W.E.F.1/7/09( AS ENVISAGED IN UNION BUDGET ON 06.7.09 )
""""""MAY BE TREATED AS MOST URGENT (FOLLOW-UP:UNION BUDGET 2009-10)
From: GV Narayana (612027/S, Ex-Sgt /GpY),
To : The Hon. Defence Minister (Resp.Shri AK Antony Garu)
Govt.of India, Ministry of Defence, New Delhi.
SUGGESTION FOR SUBSTANTIAL IMPROVEMENT/PARITY IN PENSIONS OF PRE-1.1.06 PBOR RETIREES W.E.F.1/7/09( AS ENVISAGED IN UNION BUDGET ON 06.7.09 )
Honourable Defence Minister Sir,
1. My heartfelt Gratitude/Salutations for your humane consideration, the Pensions issue of PBORs ( pathetic plight) resulting in time bound finalization of the CoS Committee (headed by the Cabinet Secretary) recommendations for PIP/OROP in r/o pre-&;post 1.1.96, pre and post 10.10.97, and pre 1.1.06 PBORs on par with pensions of post 1.1.06 retirees, its acceptance by the Govt of India, which became History. And Sir, the HONOURABLE FINANCE MINISTER, in his Budget Speech on 6.7.09, announced that the Govt. had decided to (1) TO SUBSTANTIALLY IMPROVE PENSIONS OF PRE-1.1.96 PBOR RETIREES (2) BRING PRE-& POST-10.10.97 PBORS RETIREES ON PAR WITH POST- 1.1.06 PBOR RETIREES (3) GIVE EFFECT FROM 01.07.09.
BRIEF HOSTORY – PBORs PENSIONS:-
In this context, I wish to bring to your kind notice, that the MINIMUM/ MAXIMUM PENSIONS were fixed during different CPCs (IV, V and VI) based usually on a criteria of qualifying service to earn pension(minimum 15 years), Rank held at the time of release, last 10 months average emoluments drawn. The Minimum/Maximum Pensions of Defence pensioners were fixed @Rs.375/-/(LOWEST) and Rs.4500/-pm (HIGHEST)(OF CIVILIAN PENSIONERS)w.e.f.1.1.86 (IV CPC), and were revised to Rs.1275/-(by 3.4 times) and Rs.15000/-(by 3.333 times)(LOWEST/ HIGHEST SLABS) w.e.f.1.1.96 (V CPC), as per GOI OM No. F.No.45/86/ 97-P&PW(A)Part II D/d 27.10.1997. These CIVIL PENSIONERS provisions were, IPSO FACTO, applied to PBORs pensioners without taking into a/c the entirely different trade/group structure, pay scales/responsibilities attached to the duties of Armed Forces Personnel.
The GOI, MOD vide No.(1)/99/D(Pen/ Sers), D/d 7.6.99, had modified the provisions relating to Minimum/Maximum Pensions, viz:- ‘PARA 1…w.e.f. 1.1.96, pension of all Armed Forces Pensioners irrespective of their date of retirement SHALL NOT BE LESS THAN 50% OF THE MINIMUM PAY IN THE REVISED SCALES OF PAY INTRODUCED W.E.F. 1.1.96 OF THE RANK AND RANK AND GROUP (IN CASE OF PBORS) HELD BY THE PENSIONERS” and “PARA 2.2.(a). The revision of service pension in terms of these modified Orders in respect of PBOR retirees will not be beneficial except for the rank of JCOs granted Hony.commission of Lt/Capt as the service pension is calculated at the maximum of the pay scale including 50% of the highst classn allowance, if any, of the rank/group in which it is paid.” These orders were implemented without applying the criteria “ NOT LESS THAN 50% MIN.”scale of pay of Rank/Group held on retirement by PBORs.
In the meanwhile Sir, the MOD had Restructured all the Groups/Trades of Armed Forces personnel, based on ENTRY QUALIFICATION criteria (Spl AFI 1/S/98) such as Matric/Non-Matric/Diploma/Degreee qualifications, w.e.f. 10.10.97. As a result the IAF’ trades in old Gp I has become Gp X, old Gps II & III were merged and become Gp Y and the old Gps IV & V were merged and become Gp Z. Accordingly the Pay scales of Group Y and Z were revised upwardly(Group X’s remained unchanged). The minimum scale of pay of lowest rank/group fixed was - AC (Gp X) – Rs,3675/- (Gp Y )-Rs.3250/-, (Gp Z)- Rs.3050/- and their MINIMUM pension @ 50% of scale should have been Rs.1838/-, Rs.1625/- and Rs.1515/- respectively w.e.f. 10.10.97. But surprisingly pre-10.10.97 (Pre & post 1.1.96) PBORs retirees pensions were not revised as per new pay scales applicable to them, resulting in emergence of 3 PBOR categories PBORs i.e. Pre-1.1.96, Post 1.1.96/Pre-10.10.97 and Post 10.10.97, each with different pension rates. Also the orders of RESTRUCTURING OF GROUPS VIZ. X Y & Z w.e.f. 10.10.97 were not implemented on the plea that this POLICY IS NOT APPLICABLE IN R/O RETIREES OF PRE -10.10.97, AND THEIR GROUPS WILL REMAIN THE SAME (GROUP I TO V) FOR FUTURE REVISIONS",as clarified by AFRO New Delhi.
Furthermore, Sir, as sequel to the Hon. President’s (Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam) declaration during Republic Day Parade celebrations on 26.1.2006, the MOD had issued another order on 1.2.06 to IMPROVE THE PENSIONARY BENEFITS OF PRE-1.1.96 PBORs pensioners, envisaging interalia, a MINIMUM PENSION OF Rs.1913/-.(a 1.5 times increase over Rs.1275/-) (V CPC rate) and directed the authorities to comply. But sadly again, Sir, the MOST IMPORTANT CIRCULAR NO. 350 d/d 19.5.06 of PCDA Allahabad simply excluded the MINIMUM PENSION OF Rs.1913/- criteria envisaged in the MOD order. However, strangely a different and unrelated order of the GOI, issued in 2004 on the MERGER OF 50% DEARNESS PENSION and already in vogue w.e.f. 01.4.04 (in r/o all Central Govt Employees including Defence pensioners), was not incorporated, resulting in very low fixation of pensions (even lower than the existing ones) in r/o PBORs (Sepoys /Naiks/Havildar &equivalents) with service upto 20 years (Table Nos. 59 to 72 of Cir.No.350 d/d 19.5.06). Therefore, Sir, the very concern/purpose of the Govt of India/MOD to IMPROVE THE PENSIONARY BENEFITS TO PBORs of pre-10.10.97 was defeated per se. If these orders were implemented, the revised Minimum Pensions of the Lowest Rank/Group could have been – AC-Gp X-Rs. 2757/-(1.5 times of 1838), Gp Y- Rs.2438/-(1.5 times of 3250/-), Gp Z-Rs.2288/-(1.5. times of 1525/-). Moreover, the detailed guidelines and directing all the PDAs to revise/fix pensions or PBORs on their own and not to wait for instructions/Corr. PPOs from the Govt. have only added confusion. The net result, there is a total confusion and the PDAs have not yet revised the pensions of PBORs in terms of Circular No.350 D/d 19/5/06.
Consequent to the recommendations of 6th CPC, the MOD’s issued pension orders on 11.11.08 for revision of pension of PBORs of Pre-1996 (VI CPC) w.e.f. 1.1.06 with a criteria of “NOT LESS THAN 50% PAY AS MINIMUM PENSION “ for a “20 YEARS SERVICE” period. The 6th CPC had revised Minimum/Maximum Pensions to Rs.3500/-(by 2.745 times of Rs.1275/-(LOWEST) and Rs.45000/-)(by 3 time of Rs.15000/ (HIGHEST) ranks respectively(for Civilian pensioners) w.e.f. 1.1.06. But a Fitment Formula of 2.26 times increase over old pensions of PBORs or With Minimum 50% of revised Pay Scale/Pay Band, MSP (VI CPC) for 33 years qualifying service to earn pension was made applicable to them to be reduced pro-rata in case of less years of 33 years maximum service. The VI CPC had further revised the Group to X and Y only. With all these new changes, the PBORs pensions which were less and plaguing, have been further nose-dived/reduced to an astonishing low level.
(A) The MOD Order of 3.10.00/10.11.00 -Restructuring of Groups/Trades on Entry Qualifications w.e.f. 10.10.97 may be implemented for all Pre-10.10.97 PBORs retirees, and on the basis of the revised group pay scales. The Pension Provisions (@50% Min. pay scale of the rank/group) of MOD order d/d7.6.99 be implemented w.e.f.10.10.97(V CPC).
(B) The MOD Order of 1.2.06 which raised the bar of Min.Pen.of Rs.1275/-(V CPC) to Rs.1913/(VI CPC)(by 1.5. times) may be implemented w.e.f. 1.1.96 in r/o all Pre&Post 10.10.97 PBORs retirees
(C) The 6th CPC’s formula of revised Pensions of Rs.3500/-(Min)(2.745 times of Rs.1275/-V CPC) and Rs.45000/- (Max)(3 times of Rs.15000/- V CPC) of Civil Pensioners, may be modified to 3 times increase(in place of 2.26 times) uniformly on old Min/Max pensions and applied to all pre-1.1.06 Defence Pensioners (by amending the terms of MOD Order dated 11.11.08) w.e.f. 1.1.06 ).(Rs.1913/- by 3 times – Rs.5740/-at a minimum rate to lowest rank/group PBOR).
(D) A 100% or 75% (in place of existing 50%) MSP may be added as a separate entity, (SPECIAL TOKEN/PAY BACK MEASURE BY GOI) w.e.f. 1.7.09 to all PBORs retirees.
(E) Sir, presently, the Medical Allowance @Rs.100/-pm is granted to all PBORs living in non CGHS locations from the year 1997. Keeping in view the failing health conditions of PBORs retirees due to advancing of age/living in countryside and steep rise in cost of medicines / consultation fee etc. there is an urgent need for sympathetic consideration for an upward revision of the same. The Medical Allowance (non-CGHS category) to all PBORs may be enhanced to Rs. 1500/- pm, to meet ends of justice. .
2. In view of the foregoings, I earnestly request you Sir to kindly consider and order to set right and revise the PBORs pensions on the above suggested manner or other more beneficial method, since the Govt had taken cognizance of the malady and decided to redress, and initiated steps in that direction. This would surely go a longway in benefiting the entire community of PBORs, who shall ever remain indebted and grateful to you.
3. Thanking your Sir, in anticipation of early orders.
Date: 13th July, 2009 612027, Ex-Sgt
1) The Secy, Deptt of Ex-Servicemen Welfare, - For kind information/action, please.
GOI, Ministry of Defence, New Delhi
2) The Air HQ (Dte of Pay, Pension Regs), West Block 6, - For kind info/action, please.
RK Puram, New Delhi-110066
3) The Chief Controller of Defence Accounts, New Delhi – For kind info/action, please.
4) The PCDA(Pensions),Droupadighat, Allahabad – For kind information/action please.
5)The AFRO (Info/Query Cell), New Delhi-10 – W.r.t. my e-mail of 29.6.09 (Your
Query No.7579 & reply e-mail of 8/7/09). For kind info/action please.