MINUTES OF TSEWA NATIONAL EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEETING HELD ON 03 DEC 2017 AT 1000 HRS AT 143 VAYUPURI, SECUNDERABAD
The following members were present
- Brig CS Vidyasagar (Rtd) President
- Cmde Sudheer Parakala (Rtd) Vice President & South,East & West Zones
- Col Dr GB Sethi (Rtd) General Secretary
- Lt Col G Parvathesam (Rtd) Treasurer
- Gp Capt CRR Sastry (Rtd) Joint Secy
- H / Capt B Joseph (Rtd) Joint Secy
- Brig SKS Rana VSM (Rtd) President, Legal Division
- Col Ajit Singh Rana (Rtd) President, North Zone, Delhi & Haryana
- Col Srikantha Seshadri (Rtd) President Karnataka
- Col MK Veeramani (Rtd) President, Charity Division
- H/ Capt M Narasimhar Reddy(Rtd) President Telengana.
Opening the discussions President welcomed all members and thanked them for coming for this meeting. He informed that Sub KV Subba Rao, President, TSEWA, Coastal Andhra Pradesh who had booked his rail tickets could not attend as his wife fell down from stairs and broke her leg. Hav Harish Asthana, President, UP also could not attend as his wife was not keeping well and needs constant attention.
The President thanked all the three out station members of National Executive Committee in spite of having many engagements could spare time to come all the way from Delhi and Bengaluru to attend the first National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting. He also paid compliment to the local NEC members to take part in serious discussions on the future course of TSEWA.
The President gave a brief background to the holding of first NEC meeting in Secunderabad. Gp Capt CRR Sastry in the Executive Committee meeting held in Jul – Aug 2017 suggested that since TSEWA became not only Pan India but global organization, there is a need to have All India representation in the Executive Committee. He added that the Executive Committee as on date is only comprising of seven members who are all Hyderabad based and do not represent the entire country. He informed that we can expand it by six more members with representation of three officers and three JCOs /OR from all three services. Seeing the work load and availability to shoulder additional responsibilities, he asked the Executive Committee to short list six of them and get the approval of AGM. Since AGM is held only in Jun 2018, it was felt that we can have Extraordinary General Body meeting to get approval to add six more new members to Executive Committee.
The Executive Committee sent a notice for Extraordinary General Body meeting to be held on 25 Sep 2017 to get the approval for expanding Executive Committee with six more members. Accordingly Brig SKS Rana VSM, Col Ajit Singh Rana, Col Srikantha Seshadri, Sub KV Subba Rao, JWO Milan Das and Hav Harish Asthana were recommended to the Extra Ordinary General Body.
Accordingly the Extra Ordinary General Body meeting was held on 25 Sep 2017. The addition of six more members were unanimously passed by the general body.
The tenure of this EC is for 6 years w.e.f Sep 2015 i.e. the day when TSEWA got its registration from Registrar of Societies, Hyderabad. As per our Bye Laws, National EC should meet at least once in a Quarter i.e. once in the quarter from April to June, once in second quarter of July to Sep, once in third quarter of October to December and last one in quarter Jan to Mar of every year. Along with AGM in Jun 2018, one NEC can be held.
Then President said that as usual General Secretary will give his points first, followed by Treasurer, President Charity Division, other members and lastly he will give his points.
Points from General Secretary
Visit to Delhi by team TSEWA
General Secretary said that e has been suggesting that Gp Capt CRR Sastry, Joint Secretary, Legal Advisor of HQ TSEWA must go to Delhi and discuss with Brig SKS Rana VSM, President, Legal Division and our advocate in AFT Delhi about all Legal cases and also about the total payments to be made to the advocate and the procedure to be followed for future cases etc. This will help TSEWA to plan things in advance.
Decision. Gp Capt CRR Sastry is requested to go to Delhi and other AFTs to tie up the legal case with the advocate.
Action to be taken by Gp Capt CRR Sastry, Treasurer
Feedback about TSEWA activities
The feedback of TSEWA is really very good. We should live up to that in future also. Then the Agenda points were taken up.
- Nomination of additional members for NEC
It was proposed that Brig Vinayak Ramnarayan, VSM, President, Central Zone TSEWA, MP and Chattisgarh, Lt Col Latif Vadakkayil, President, Pension Division, H/ Capt M Narasimha Reddy, President, TSEWA Telangana, WO Thiruchelvam, President, TSEWA Tamilnadu and one Navy NCO (name to be given by Cmde Sudheer Parakala), are recommended to be included as members of NEC to have broader base. This was agreed by all. This shall be put up to AGM for their ratification in Jun 2018. Total strength of NEC will be 18 including one NCO of Navy to be nominated by Cmde Sudheer Parakala
Decision. The additional four members short listed by NEC will function as additional members and attend the next quarterly meeting of NEC at Secunderabad on first Sunday of Mar 2018. Their names as members of NEC will be put up in AGM of Jun 2018 for ratification.
- Ratification of all Recommendations Given by Core Group after the last AGM in Jun 2017
All the suggestions given by Core Group after the last AGM held in Jun 2017 have to be ratified by the NEC. This is a mandatory requirement, since the financial powers are vested with only NEC. However NEC can co- opt any one to help them to speed up the decisions without delay. Since all are seeing the Minutes of Meeting of Core Cum Executive Committee held once in fortnight, all members of NEC are aware of actions taken for growth of TSEWA. Hence all decisions taken by Executive Committee on the recommendation of Core Group stands ratified by NEC.
- Inclusion of ESMs from DSC & TA as members of TSEWA
This point was discussed. All the members agreed that any ESM getting pension from Defence is entitled to become member of TSEWA. So all ESMs of DSC and TA can become members of TSEWA.
- Ratification of all Expenditure incurred after last AGM
Lt Col G Parvathesam (Rtd), Treasurer made an elaborate presentation on the funds position. He explained that earlier we had three accounts viz (a) Membership Account (b) AFT Account and (c) Reserve Account. A number of meetings with the Chartered Accountant took place. With the suggestions given by him and presentation made by Air Cmde GS Nijjar, member Core Group, another account titled TSEWA Corpus was opened in SBI Bhaskar Rao Nagar, Secunderabad.
He further explained that no expenditure is permitted from membership account. In the beginning we had no source of income except membership fee, hence some expenditure was incurred out of membership account. The same got transferred from Reserve Account to Membership Account.
The Chartered Accountant explained that once TSEWA obtained exemption from payment of income tax under Sec 12 (A) of Income Tax 1961, we have become a charitable organization. Therefore it is incumbent on TSEWA to expend 85% of income received in the financial year on charitable activities. Interest earned from fixed deposits of all four accounts is income to be transferred into Reserve Account. Brig SKS Rana, VSM, Col Ajit Singh Rana and Col Srikantha Seshadri suggested the name of Reserve Account be changed to General Fund from which all income is put into and all expenditure paid out of it. This suggestion was accepted and Treasurer assured that the name of Reserve Account will be changed to General Account.
The Chartered Accountant further informed that any donation given by any donor falls under two categories. First is general donation where the donor does not specify any condition and another is specific donation where in the donor may specify for which purpose the donation is made. General donation is an income and Specific donation is not an income. The Corpus comes under category of Specific fund and any donation made to Corpus is not income. Any interest earned from Fixed Deposits of the four accounts is income and 85% of if is to be expended on charitable activities. He further advised us that unless we utilize the amount on charity we are unlikely to get 80(G) exemption from Commissioner of Income Tax (Exemptions).
The Treasurer informed that we have as on date about Rs 8 lakhs for charity and requested the President, Charity Division to carry out the charitable activities failing which we are required to pay income tax on unspent balance in income even after obtaining IT exemption under Sec 12A.
Thereafter the Treasurer gave out the details of income and expenditure.
He further pointed out that internal audit as per ISO – 9001 – 2015 was carried out by Lt Col Dr K Bhaskar Reddy and Hony Capt M Narasimha Reddy. All observations pointed out have been taken care of and actions to rectify defects have been completed. There are no major deviations from laid down rules of accounting.
Decision. Action taken by Treasurer from Jun 2017 to Nov 2017 ratified by NEC.
- Activities of Charity Division
Col MK Veeramani, President, Charity Division gave a presentation on various activities of Charity Div and also Standard Operating Procedure formulated. He explained in detail all the activities of Charity Division. He explained the need to form the Charity Division, scope of work, beneficiaries , financial powers of Charity Division, the money available under Charity head (as given by the Treasurer), the names of individuals who got the financial help, the cases in the pipe line etc. He explained the salient features of SOP on Charity. He told that he has sent two e – mails and one SMS to all State, Zonal presidents, explaining how to go about locating deserving beneficiary, criterion on selection of beneficiary, checking the financial condition of beneficiary by physically visiting their place, satisfying that the beneficiary is in need of financial assistance irrespective of race, religion, caste, creed etc.
The exemption under Sec 12 (A) was given only on the condition that our charity is not to be restricted to the Ex-Servicemen community but to include all sections of the society.
He said except Col Srikantha Seshadri, President TSEWA, Karnataka no one else has sent any concrete recommendation for Charity. He explained the steps to be taken, points to be covered, purpose of taking videos, documents to be enclosed etc. He said if all Zonal Presidents do not extend sincere help promptly, it may be difficult to spend the allotted money to the deserving cases in other states. It is not difficult to spend the money only in Telengana. But we want all the deserving persons from all over India to get the benefit. Again he requested all present to take up this seriously and do the needful immediately. He further explained any expenditure incurred by the Presidents of States, Zones, Districts etc shall be accounted for under charitable activities. The financial powers of Charity division is Rs 25000 per transaction. SOP on charity is put up in TSEWA Blog. All agreed to locate deserving beneficiary so that we meet the target by end of Financial year 2017 – 18.
Decision. All Zonal, State and District Presidents of TSEWA shall identify deserving beneficiaries for financial assistance from TSEWA.
6. SOP on Legal Cases
Gp Capt CRR Sastry, Joint Secretary & Legal Advisor, HQ TSEWA made a detailed presentation on SOP on Legal Cases of TSEWA for the information of all. He explained how the anomaly is identified, how it is presented to the Executive Committee to seek their permission to file the case in AFT, how a mini legal case is sent to Brig SKS Rana, VSM, President, Legal Div and how legal opinion of our advocate is obtained. Then only environment is sensitized about the anomaly. All India Co-ordinator to be a link between the petitioners and HQ TSEWA is identified. The entire procedure from detecting an anomaly to the time of our advocate sending certified copy of judgment of AFT Delhi to the respondents (Service Hqs, Ministry of Defence, CGDA, PCDAs concerned, Record Offices) was extensively covered.
Brig SKS Rana, VSM, President, Legal Division intervened to say that AFT Delhi insists the original application (OA) be filed for each Service separately i.e. one OA for Army, one OA for Navy and one OA for IAF. He also suggested that each batch should not go beyond 150 petitioners to ensure the Govt advocate will not seek adjournment.
It was also suggested that memo of parties be put up in the TSEWA Blog before the legal documents are sent to Delhi so that any mistakes in personal particulars are detected by the petitioners.
Brig SKS Rana, VSM informed that he sends the status of legal cases filed in AFT Delhi from time to time to Smt Rekha Sekhri, Designer & Administrator of TSEWA Blog for putting up the same in the blog.
Once the AFT Delhi gives their judgment a certified copy of the judgment is sent to all Service HQs, for the officers and also to all concerned Record Offices for JCOs /OR to get Govt sanction to implement the judgment of the AFT. Once the certified copies of the judgment is given to the applicants, the responsibility of TSEWA is over. Then the concerned individuals have to take up the case to get their dues.
- Making a Panel of Advocates for TSEWA in different AFTs and Circuit Benches.
At present we are filing all cases only in AFT Delhi. Due to this there is inherent delay in getting the Judgments. In some cases all AFTs do not function, due to want of members. In some AFTs, due to large number of pending cases, there are delays. Earlier we were not aware that if any case is filed with petitioners from Army, Navy, and Air Force, the counter has to be given by the three Service HQs. If one Service HQ did not give the reply, the entire case gets delayed. Hence now onwards we are filing separate cases for the three Services separately. Sometimes it may so happen that if we file a case in any other AFT other than AFT Delhi, we may be able to get the judgment faster. Also the number of cases are more, then the Service HQ will take more time to give the counter. President gave the example of our AFT – 1, i.e. OA 34 /2016, which was filed in Sep 2015, and still we have not got the judgment. On the contrary the 13 Maj Gens and equivalents, filed the case during Apr 2016 and they got the judgment in Feb 2017 because the number of petitioners is less.
After some discussion, it was decided that we will explore the possibility of having a panel of Advocates and by rotation we can ask one of them to file our case. Also by keeping the batch less, say 100 to 150 instead of having more than 800 or 900 petitioners in one case, we will be able to get judgment faster. It was decided that Like Brig SKS Rana VSM, we should have a contact person for every AFT. Also we have to find a Lead Litigant from one of the States under jurisdiction of AFT only. For AFT Kochi, Lt Col Latif Vadakkayil had agreed to be the contact person. Same way for Circuit bench in Bengaluri, Karnataka, Col Srikantha Seshadri has agreed to be the contact person. Col Ajit Singh Rana had agreed to be the contact person for AFT Chandigarh. It was also decided that few Advocates of good standing who had won cases for ESMs, should be contacted and empaneled for our cases. It was also decided that we should find out suitable contact persons for AFTs at Chennai, Mumbai, Jaipur, Lucknow and Kolkata soon.
Decision. Co-ordinators for AFTs at Mumbai, Jaipur, Lucknow, Kolkata be identified and legal cases be filed in all regional AFTs.
- Ideal batch size to get quick judgment from AFTs
After some discussions it was decided that the batch size should not be more than 150. It was also decided that the contact person should discuss with the advocate prior to giving the case, regarding the batch size, the legal fees for that batch, the clerckage to be paid, keeping the batch size in mind.
The legal fees for the widows of JCOs and NCOs was discussed. It was decided that from single ladies of deceased JCOs and OR, no legal fees is to be collected. Also keeping the present Legal fees being asked by the advocates, we should enhance it to be paid by the officers and widows of officers. It was decided after some discussion that from officers we should collect legal fees of Rs 8000/- from Jan 2018, and from officers’ wives, we should collect Rs 5000/- for each legal case. This is to cater for enhanced legal fees to be paid to advocates and also to pay for the legal fees of wives of deceased JCOs /OR from whom we do not collect any legal fees. In effect the legal fees of wives of JCOs /OR will be paid by Officers and wives of deceased Officers. For JCOs, NCOs and Sepoys the same legal fees is to be collected. It was also decided that if possible, the batch should be based on the Record office concerned, to cut short the delay. This is to ensure that if one record office does not reply, all the cases should not be pended.
Decision. The batch size for each legal case should not exceed 150 petitioners. Separate case is to be filed Service Wise i.e. one for Army, Navy and IAF. The legal fees for Officers is enhanced to Rs 8000 and for wives of deceased officers to Rs 5000.
- Formation of TSEWA Trust
Even though this point is being discussed for a long time, it was decided that this point should be pended till we get exemption under 80G (after we file the third IT Return). In the meantime the spade work should continue to cut short the delay.
10 Liaison cell at Delhi and Mumbai
The necessity of having a cell at Delhi and Mumbai to liaise with Army HQ, Air HQ and Naval HQ was agreed by all. Hence we should find a suitable person to do this job. Anyone having the experience, time, zeal and Will to do work should be selected. This will facilitate us to get the judgments faster. Brig SKS Rana, VSM opined that this will not serve any purpose. After deliberations this point was dropped.
11 Recognition from Min of Pensions, Public Grievances & Personnel
TSEWA should obtain recognition form Ministry of Personnel, Pensions and Public Grievances provided we file third Income Tax Return.
12 TSEWA Calendar of 2018
H/ Capt B Joseph, Joint Secretary brought the proof calendar of 2018. Some corrections were made. The suggestions given by various members were incorporated. It was decided that the calendar will be given as complimentary and not sold. H/ Capt Joseph was asked to get the same printed within a week, so that these calendars can be given before the New Year. H/Capt Joseph had agreed for this. His effort was appreciated by all.
13 Crowd Funding
It was suggested by Lt Col Latif Vadakayil to do crowd funding. It was not agreed to by all. Hence this was dropped.
14 Employment of Two more staff for TSEWA
General Secretary and Treasurer brought out the utmost necessity to have two more staff due to increased work load. The necessity for this was agreed by all. General Secretary was asked to find suitable persons. The salary of the present three staff members was discussed. Brig SKS Rana, VSM suggested that two senior staff members must be given higher salary than the Accountant who joined recently.
Since Gen Secy and Treasurer expressed their total satisfaction with the work of the two old staff ie Mr Anand Kumar and Mr Srinivas Reddy, it was approved to enhance their salary by Rs 2000 w.e.f. Jan 2018.
Decision. Two more staff members be employed and salary of Sri Anand Kumar and Sri Srinivas Reddy be enhanced by Rs 2000 from Jan 2018.
There being no other points President thanked all members especially those who came from outstation. The meeting ended.
Brig CS Vidyasagar (Rtd)