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Department of Expenditure has issued gazette notification regarding extension of 4 month to 7th Central Pay Commission...

, by indianmilitaryveterans

MINISTRY OF FINANCE (Department of Expenditure) RESOLUTION New Delhi, the 8th September, 2015 No. 1/1/2013-E. III(A).—The Government of India have decided that the Para 5 of this Ministry’s Resolution No. 1/1/2013-E.III(A) dated 28.2.2014 shall be modified as under :— “The Commission will make its recommendations by 31st December, 2015. It may consider, if necessary, sending reports on any of the matters as and when the recommendations are finalized.” RATAN P. WATAL, Finance Secy.

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18,000 judges neglected by 7th pay commission; judges association asks SC for separate pay commission

, by indianmilitaryveterans

  Supreme Court for a separate pay commission for lower court judge is up for response by the central government, reported Mint. A bench of chief justice HL Dattu and justices Shiva Kirti Singh and Amitava Roy issued notice to the centre, in the case, yesterday. AIJA’s petition states that there is no provision for increasing the pay scale of lower court judges in the seventh pay commission, thus neglecting 18,000 Indian judges. The AIJA has prayed for directions to set up an independent pay commission - the All India Judicial Commission - to review the service conditions of the lower judiciary, which includes pay scale, pension and retirement age.

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Open a debate on OROP, Mr Modi. Don’t isolate the veterans

, by indianmilitaryveterans

Respected Sir, Since I cover issues pertaining to security and conflict, I’ve also had the opportunity to report on One Rank One Pension (OROP). On September 5, I was present in Room 129 D of the South Block where defence minister Manohar Parrikar made the announcement on OROP. Many of my colleagues incorrectly referred to this event as a press conference. I am sure you’d appreciate that when no questions or clarifications are allowed, the event becomes an announcement. Why was such a stance adopted for such an occasion, I still ponder. This brings me to the heart of the issue I’d like to raise. Unlike matters of operations, acquisitions or investigations where details are best withheld till a suitable time is arrived at, OROP is an issue where maximum transparency could and should be demonstrated. But this has hardly been observed. Be it when multiple well-wishers of your government were talking to the protesting veterans (seven names were made public) for a solution or when the defence minister, flanked by the service chiefs, defence secretary and his junior minister, simply walked out after reading a prepared statement. So many queries arose seeing this. Yet, doubts were met with not one clarification. In fact, even among several serving defence personnel the feeling is that the "way OROP was handled" could’ve been much better. Doubts also persist because the order for implementation of OROP – the original aim of the protest – has still not materialised. The issue of "voluntary retirement" which found a way into the announcement by Parrikar led to immense anger, notwithstanding your words later. All this has ensured that whenever your government issues the order, it will be read it with a doubt in mind and a magnifying glass in hand. I am sure you did not desire such a bitter state. Mr Modi, when it was announced that the government will revise thepensions of our veterans once in five years and not one, as they demanded, was it not important that your government told us why? I could, in fact, ask the same for the slew of anomalies which have emerged where you felt no explanation was necessary. May I also add that seeking clarifications isn’t the same as rejecting arguments. Is the problem in granting them OROP, the way they have been asking for, a financial one or an administrative one or a political one? I must say you’ve allowed doubts to creep in. Former army chief Gen NC Vij, whom I met on the evening of September 5 said it, “If there was an issue with the finances or anything else, I would expect our government to be open to the veterans and talk. They are patriots, not unreasonable agitators.” I distinctly recall your words before you took over as the prime minister. You said, “Politicians should learn to say ‘no’ and bureaucrats should learn to say ‘yes’.” Was it your turn to say "no" or your bureaucrats who should’ve said "yes"? Allow me to put on record a belief that many hold, not without merit. For those joining the government post 2004, pensions have become contributory in nature which means the government has less liability. This includes officers from services like Indian Administrative Service (IAS) and even those from Central Armed Police Force (CAPF). In comparison, government is continuing the old pension scheme only for the army, navy and air force. Is that not showing respect and granting a special place? I think it is. Is the economy free of all the encumbrances for you to give in to whatever it asked for? No, it isn’t. While the general perception, thanks to your superb oratory and the might of the government propaganda, is that the entire OROP issue is settled, the veterans are still protesting. They just held a massive rally on Saturday to buttress their point. On asking they point to what they believe are major anomalies. Your government has taken an important step. Your government has a former army chief and a celebrated colonel as ministers and yet this dichotomy! Before things implode then, can we have a frank talk?

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Centre Says Rotate Govt Employees For Integrity, Compulsorily Retire If In Public Interest

, by indianmilitaryveterans

Indian Military Veterans


New Delhi: The central government has emphasised on rotation of government employees on sensitive and non-sensitive posts “to ensure integrity” in the government service and has also asked all ministries to strictly follow existing rules of compulsorily retiring government employeess before 60 years of age if “in public interest”.
Cabinet Secretary Pradeep Kumar Sinha
Cabinet Secretary Pradeep Kumar Sinha
The Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) said in the circular F.No.C-11020/1/2015-Vig
issued to all central ministries and departments on Monday, incorporating the observations of cabinet Cabinet Secretary Pradeep Kumar Sinha at a meeting on August 10.
“it has been emphasized that rotation needs to be carried out in respect of sensitive posts and non-sensitive posts to ensure probity,” the circular of DoPT said.
It also suggested review and screening of officers under FR 56(J) within ministries. Under FR 56(J) of the Central Civil Services (Pension) Rules, periodical review of officers is permitted for strengthening of administration.
DoPT will monitor the implementation and obtain compliance from all ministries in this regard, the circular said.
“All ministries/departments are, therefore, requested to kindly look into the matter and carry out rotation in respect of sensitive and non-sensitive posts and FR 56(J). As this activity is to be completed in a time bound manner, it is requested that priority attention may be paid to it and inputs sent to the internal Vigilance Section at the very earliest,” according to the circular.
FR 56 (J) of CCS (Pension) Rules, 1972, says, the government has the absolute right to retire, if it is necessary to do so in public interest, a government servant of group ‘A’ and ‘B’ who entered service before 35 years of age and have attained the age of 50 years.
In other cases, the age-limit is of 55 years when the government servant can be compulsorily retired. A three-month notice period or three month pay in lieu of it is supposed to be given.

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Railwaymen Demand OROP

, by indianmilitaryveterans

Indian Military Veterans

Railwaymen Demand OROP

New Delhi: With the government giving in-principle approval to the one rank one pension scheme for defence personnel, Railway employees are now asking for similar pension benefit, arguing that their duties too are “hazardous, risky and complex”.
M Raghavaiah, General Secretary of NFIR
M Raghavaiah, General Secretary of NFIR
In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, National Federation of Indian Railwaymen has demanded uniform pension policy for railway employees.
“On an average, 800 railway employees get killed per year in the course of duty and nearly 3,000 sustain injuries at work,” M Raghavaiah, general secretary of NFIR, said.
Railways, one of the largest employer in the country, has about 13 lakh employees.
He said over 85 per cent of railway employees work in remote locations and extremist-affected areas.
Raghavaiah appealed to scrap the New Pension Scheme in railways and grant OROP to employees “as has been agreed to in the case of retired defence personnel”.
PTI

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OROP Involves Addl Spending Of 2.2 Pc, Won’t Be Burden On Defence Budget: Parrikar

, by indianmilitaryveterans

Indian Military Veterans


New Delhi: Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar today said the ‘One Rank, One Pension’ scheme will not be a “heavy” burden as it involves an additional spending of just 2.2 per cent out of his ministry’s budget.
Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar
Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar
Parrikar said he would be able to collect the amount by reducing wastage, lowering cost, and eliminating middlemen in defence deals.
“A lot of people said OROP budget is going to be very heavy. I can tell you that total defence outlay was Rs 3.29 lakh crore. So it only forms about 2.2 per cent additionality in defence outlay,” Parrikar said at a seminar organised by industrial chamber FICCI.
“And if I can, I promise also, I can bring that amount by saving the wastage or lowering cost by various other innovative ideas and by really preventing the middlemen” from making money, he added.
Later, responding to a question on the ongoing agitation by ex-servicemen, he said: “It is a democratic right (to protest), you cannot take it away.”
However, he sought to remind the protesting veterans that for the first time in 42 years, a government has come out with OROP.
The comments came on a day when veterans organised a rally, demanding that the government remove anomalies in the scheme announced by it recently.
PTI

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இந்தியக் குடிமகன்கள் தங்களது இந்திய பாஸ்போர்ட் (கடப்பிதழ்) மூலம் 58 நாடுகளுக்கு விசா இன்றி பயணம் செய்யலாம்.

, by indianmilitaryveterans

இந்தியக் குடிமகன்கள் தங்களது இந்திய பாஸ்போர்ட் (கடப்பிதழ்) மூலம் 58 நாடுகளுக்கு விசா இன்றி பயணம் செய்யலாம். அதேவேளையில், 29 நாடுகளுக்கு ‘விசா ஆன் அரைவல் – Visa on arrival’ என்ற வருகையின் போது விசா சேவையைப் பயன்படுத்தலாம். பாஸ்போர்ட் அட்டவணை அதிகாரப்பூர்வ இணையதளத்தின் படி (Passport Index official website) அமெரிக்கா அல்லது பிரிட்டிஷ் கடப்பிதழ் வைத்திருக்கும் ஒருவர், 147 நாடுகளுக்கு விசா இன்றி பயணம் மேற்கொள்ளலாம். அந்த வகையில், இந்திய கடப்பிதழ் வைத்திருக்கும் ஒருவர் 58 நாடுகளுக்கு விசா இன்றிப் பயணம் செய்யும் சலுகை உள்ளது. அந்த 58 நாடுகளின் பட்டியல் இதோ: Bhutan Hong Kong South Korea (Jeju) Macau Nepal Antarctica Seychelles FYRO Macedonia Svalbard Dominica Grenada Haiti Jamaica Montserrat St. Kitts & Nevis St. Vincent & Grenadines Trinidad & Tobago Turks & Caicos Islands British Virgin Islands El Salvador Ecuador Cook Islands Fiji Micronesia Niue Samoa Vanuatu Cambodia Indonesia Laos Thailand Timor Leste Iraq (Basra) Jordan Comoros Is. Maldives Mauritius Cape Verde Djibouti Ethiopia Gambia Guinea-Bissau Kenya Madagascar Mozambique Sao Tome & Principe Tanzania Togo Uganda Georgia Tajikistan St. Lucia Nicaragua Bolivia Guyana Nauru Palau Tuvalu வருகையின் போது விசா (Visa On Arrival) Bolivia Burundi Cambodia Cape Verde Comoros Djibouti Ethiopia Guinea-Bissau Guyana Indonesia Jordan Kenya Laos Madagascar Maldives Nauru Palau Saint Lucia Samoa Seychelles Somalia Tanzania Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tuvalu Uganda Somaliland Niue மேற்கண்ட ‘விசா ஆன் அரைவலில்’ பட்டியல் சில கட்டுப்பாடுகளுக்கு உட்பட்டது குறிப்பிடத்தக்கது. தகவல் – International Business Times

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Ajai Shukla: After OROP, instability

, by indianmilitaryveterans

The still unresolved, "one rank, one pension" (OROP) agitation has exacerbated the lack of trust between the military, on the one hand, and politicians and bureaucrats, on the other. In a double defeat for the government, it will pay out at least Rs 18,000-22,000 crore for a settlement, but still leave most ex-servicemen grumbling. That is because the government has misunderstood the nature of the OROP agitation: it is less a demand for money than an expression of outrage at being discriminated against vis-à-vis the cordially disliked Indian Administrative Service (IAS). Many veterans have told me they would accept the status quo on pensions, provided OROP benefits are also withdrawn from the IAS and the Indian Foreign Service (IFS). But the tiger has tasted blood, given the strong media and public support during the OROP agitation. Already another (morally and logically justifiable) demand is taking shape with armed forces discussion groups buzzing with another long-standing grievance bearing the clumsy moniker of "non-functional upgradation". NFU, which the government has denied the military, was granted to numerous Group-A central services like the Defence Research & Development Service, Border Roads Organisation, Indian Ordnance Factory Service, et al. It is only a matter of time before the NFU demand is raised more strongly. Advertisement  In simple terms, NFU means that when an IAS officer from a particular batch (a batch includes everyone who joins service the same year) is promoted to a certain rank (say deputy secretary), all her batchmates from Group-A central services automatically start drawing the pay scale of deputy secretary two years after her promotion. This continues all the way up the line. The term NFU implies that, even as those officials continue to discharge their earlier functions, they are upgraded to the higher pay grade of their IAS batchmate. Effectively this means that every central services officer makes it to top pay grades, albeit with a two-year time lag behind the IAS. You might wonder why the IAS, which safeguards its own interests well by virtue of making the rules, has not awarded itself NFU cover. That is because it does not need it; every IAS officer anyway reaches the government's highest grade of pay, called the "apex scale", which brings in a salary of Rs 80,000 a month. Even when an IAS officer fails to get empanelled for promotion by the Centre, she continues getting time-scale promotions in her state cadre. When she reaches the rank of "additional chief secretary" in the state cadre, which all of them automatically do, she enters the apex scale. The IFS benefits from a similar system. Military officers deeply resent the fact that the IAS and IFS keep getting promoted, regardless of merit and performance. Furthermore, the IAS wrangled an order after the 6th Pay Commission that officials drawing salaries in the apex scale would be automatically entitled to OROP. This means that, as successive pay commissions revise the apex scale, as the 7th Pay Commission is currently doing, their pensions would rise in sync. However, 99 per cent of military officers do not make it to the apex scale. For them, each pay commission would separately determine smaller pension raises. The double benefit to the IAS and IFS - i.e., apex scale salaries for all, and OROP for all - is doubly infuriating to the military, whose exceptionally steep promotion pyramid allows only a minuscule percentage of officers to reach the apex scale. Of a hundred army, navy or air force officers in a batch, only 30-40 are selected for promotion to colonel (or equivalent rank in the navy and air force), 10-12 of those go on to become brigadiers, four-five become major generals and just one or two make lieutenant general, where apex scales apply. While the military deems this rank hierarchy essential, officers believe they must be covered by NFU, so that those who lose out on promotion do not simultaneously lose out on salaries and pension. There are significant and obvious disadvantages in being excluded from NFU. A major general posted to army headquarters as an additional director general draws a significantly lower salary than a civilian director serving directly under him. If the major general were to retire in his present rank, his pension would be Rs 5,000 lower than his civilian subordinate, even were the latter to retire on the same date with less service than the general. Every Group-A central service officer is assured of retiring in at least the "higher administrative grade" pay scale, equivalent to the pay grade of a lieutenant general. In comparison, just one per cent of army officers reach that pay grade. Yet the defence ministry has flatly turned down NFU for the armed forces, after the military demanded it in 2009-10. The detailed and convincing case mentioned a range of employment-related hardships the military faced, including: legally binding curbs on their fundamental rights, strict disciplinary codes, long separation from families, truncated careers, stringent promotion criteria, continuous hazards and threats to life. Furthermore, the grant of NFU to the IPS but not to the military disturbed the principle of parity between the two that the 3rd, 4th and 5th Pay Commissions had established. The defence ministry peremptorily rejected this demand in a one-page note on July 15, 2010. This said the military's service conditions were different from those of civilians (hardly news to the military, which had citing harsher working conditions in their demand). The ministry argued that the services already got "military service pay" as compensation for difficult working conditions. Finally, stating the obvious again, the ministry declared that NFU was for organised Group-A services, which the military was not. A right-to-information petition later revealed that no civil servant higher than a joint secretary had considered this demand, which three service chiefs had vetted and cleared. As with OROP, the system seems not to be correcting itself until it is pushed to the wall. The 7th Pay Commission is unlikely to extend NFU to the armed forces, since members are protesting that it makes poor economic sense. The army, navy and air force know that is true but will not countenance everybody getting the benefit except for the one that deserves it most, by virtue of having by far the highest percentage of superseded personnel. The big political question is: what form will the demand for NFU take? OROP was a pension issue, so pensioners did the heavy lifting at Jantar Mantar, the protest site in New Delhi. But how will serving officers demand NFU? If the central government is frustrated by these complex and interlinked demands, it must blame the deplorable creating of exceptions for the IAS. Avay Shukla, a former IAS officer who blogs on "Hill Post", noted during the OROP agitation: "The government consists of scores of departments... There are intricate linkages between them: the whole structure is like a huge spider web in which all the strands are inter-connected, and disturbing just one cobweb destabilises the entire structure." With the structure already disturbed, can the government restore the status quo ante? Finding a new equilibrium that balances so many actors seems well nigh impossible.

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