PATIALA: Indian Ex-Services League Punjab & Chandigarh, the oldest and a non-political body of ex-servicemen has asked the committee formed by Centre Govt. under the Chairmanship of Secretary (Ex-Servicemen Affair) S.M. Acharya to place Havildars and equivalent in pay-band, PB-2.
The league said that these non-commissioned officers form the real backbone of the Armed Forces and enjoy the same position as their counter parts, Lt. Cols. and equivalent, in the cadre of commissioned officers.
Sgt. Prabhjot Singh Chhatwal PLS Retd., President, Indian Ex-Services League, Punjab & Chandigarh said in a press release Tuesday that It was a pity that none of the senior officers, who spearheaded the demand of placing Lt. Cols. in PB-4, spoke even a single word when they found these senior non-commissioned officers having been placed in PB-1 along with class IV employees which caused a tremendous frustration among the PBORs.
The league has, further stressed upon the committee to re-allocate Sub. Major to pay-band, PB-3 if it really intends to arrest the heart burning among the PBORs caused by the recommendations / implementation of Sixth Pay Commission, He added.
The League has reiterated its demand of raising minimum pension (applicable to reservist only) to Rs. 4600/= PM (Basic Pay 5200 + Gr.Pay 2000+ MSP 2000 divided by 2) on the same analogy as it has fixed Rs. 3500/= PM (Basic Pay 5200+Gr.Pay 1800 divided by 2) for the civilian employees Sixth Pay Commission has separated soldiers from civilian by granting MSP (Military Service Pay) to the former at the rate of Rs. 2000/= for PBORs and Rs. 6000/= for officers. As such, granting of Rs. 3500/= PM as minimum pension to service personnel is not justified by any stretch of law.
The League has further demanded a pension of Rs. 6000/=PM for Sepoy, Rs. 7000/= for Nk. Rs. 9000/= for Havildar Rs. 10,000/= PM for Nb. Sub. Rs. 11,000/= for Sub. and Rs. 13,000/=PM for Sub. Majors and equivalents till the committee is in a position to grant ONE RANK ONE PENSION to the soldiers.
League has sought the support of all likeminded organizations of ex-servicemen (both PBORs and officers) and also the senior officers in IESM if they sincerely wish to stand by the PBORs as many of them apparently claim to do so in this respect.
The league has reminded the committee that PBORs count for 96% of the total strength in the Armed forces and they have been crushed by the partial recommendation and faltered implementation of pay commission report.
In the Armed Forces, Havildars and below, who retire before the age of 40 years, count for 85% where as J.C.O. form a chunk of 11% and the strength of officers is only 4%. A gross injustice has been done to middle ranking PBORs, Hav. and equivalent which needs to be corrected at the earliest.
In case nothing is done to assuage the feeling of PBORs, situation is likely to explode to an uncontrollable extent for which the govt. in power at the center will be, solely, held responsible.