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Thursday, April 9, 2009
DENIAL OF SECOND FAMILY PENSION TO THE WIDOWS IS AN INJUSTICE
DENIAL OF SECOND FAMILY PENSION TO THE WIDOWS OF RE-EMPLOYED EX-SERVICEMEN IS AN INJUSTICE
In order to keep the armed forces young and fighting fit, every year around 60,000 men are sent out at middle age. The majority of these men are at the age group of 35 to 40 years. The pension paid is also meagre. Therefore they are forced to seek re-employment in government departments with some relaxation in age and educational qualifications through various selection process.
Most of the re-employed ex-servicemen are in Group IV posts. Except for the age relaxation, they are not given any weightage in pay fixation, seniority or promotion in the re-employed post. These disciplined men join these departments between the age 35 to 40, 45 and retire at the age of 58 or 60 with a truncated service in the re-employed post with minimum pension.
In the defence service also he is shunted out after 20 to 22 years service with minimum pro-rata pension, similarly in the re-employed post also he is not in a position to serve more than 20 to 22 years. Even though, his total service in both the departments exceeds 40 years, but is given minimum pro-rata pension in both the departments. Whereas his counter parts in the civil allowed to serve 33 years continuously and enjoy all the benefits like seniority, promotion etc., and retire comparatively at a higher rank/scale and pension than these poor ex-servicemen.
When the retirement papers are prepared for pension in the re-employed post, a condition is imposed that the family pension will not be granted in the re-employed post if the ex-servicemen’s wife was entitled for a defence family pension. If at all you insist family pension in the re-employed post, you have get a confirmation from the defence pension sanctioning authorities that they will not sanction defence family pension whenever contingencies arise. This is a draconian law imposed only on poor re-employed ex-servicemen. Lot of representations were sent to government for the past 25 years to remove this rule. But till to day no response from the government. Even the 4th, 5th and the 6th CPCs did not listen to our request. The injustice continues. Even the Banks, which are having contributory pension scheme is also denying the family pension to the widows of the retired ex-servicemen bank employees.
The position of the re-employed pensioners was worst during 4th CPC. It is the 5th CPC which brought some relief to the re-employed by allowing them to draw their both the pensions separately without any floor ceiling. Even though a number of ex-servicemen organizations put up the proposal for allowing both the family pensions to the eligible widows, but the 6th CPC did not mention any word about it at all in their report.
One of the main reason for ignoring our demands in the past by the government is the lack of unity among our men and not coming on the streets for justice. I think now the situation is different after formation of IESM. A new stream of blood in injected into our men by our beloved organization IESM. I hope we will achieve. I hope our organization will take up this issue with government and get both pension paid to the poor widows at an early date.