Minutes of TSEWA Core Committee Meeting held on 03 Aug 2019 at 143, Vayupuri, Secunderabad
The following attended the Core Committee meeting at 143 Vayupuri, Secunderabad:-
- Brig CS Vidyasagar (Retd) – President – in Chair
- Cmde Sudheer Parakala (Retd) – Vice President
- Col Dr GB Sethi (Retd) – General Secretary
- Hony Capt B Joseph (Retd) – Joint Secretary
- Col MJ Ganapathy (Retd) – Member
- Lt Col VS Ramana Reddy (Retd) – Member
- Maj Bikshapathy (Retd) – Member
- Hony Capt M Narasimha Reddy – Member
The President welcomed all to the weekly core committee meeting and thanked them for sparing their time for contributing to the growth of TSEWA. He then requested General Secretary to commence the proceedings.
General Secretary’s Points.
Item I : Admission of IESM into NCESMO. General Secretary informed that Col TN Raman (Retd) originator of concept of NCESMO in his mail complimented TSEWA for supporting IESM in the case on OROP being heard in Hon’ble Supreme Court. He suggested that it is high time NCESMO to consider admitting IESM into its fold. The General Secretary supported the idea.
Cmde Sudheer Parakala (Retd) suggested that if IESM eschews its policy of aligning with any political party, then it is most welcome to join NCESMO.
The President informed that most of the veterans have their own personal preferences for political parties. He stated that he voted for BJP in the 2019 Lok Sabha Elections but he as President of TSEWA cannot align with any political party. He further added that contribution of IESM in getting OROP in Nov 2015 cannot be ignored. Due credit should be given to IESM for that achievement by organizing a number of demonstrations and getting sympathy from public at large. But once the Govt of India announced OROP in truncated form in Nov 2015, it would have been advisable to call off the agitation. Agitation against Govt of the day and request for negotiation cannot go side by side. He further stated that Maj Gen Satbir Singh, SM (Retd), Chairman IESM, was seen openly supporting some political parties in State elections and Lok Sabha Elections which gives impression that IESM has shed its apolitical character. IESM must eschew its political affiliation and declare its apolitical character so that it can be admitted to NCESMO.
Recommendation of the Core Committee. The Core Committee after long deliberation came to the view that there should be no opposition to IESM joining NCESMO provided they declare they are apolitical. They recommended that General Secretary to appraise Col TN Raman (Retd) to take the issue further to its logical conclusion. IESM joining NCESMO will strengthen the new organization.
Item II: Help to IESM in OROP Case Filed in Hon’ble Supreme Court. The General Secretary informed that the President TSEWA on request of Maj Gen Satbir Singh, SM (Retd), Chairman, IESM sent data to prove that OROP – 2018 gives much higher pension compared to OROP – 2013. It is welcome sign by which two ESM Associations come together to support OROP in Hon’ble Supreme Court. He further stated next date of hearing of OROP case filed by IESM in Hon’ble Supreme Court is on 06 Aug 2019. If IESM needs detailed briefing on OROP – 2018 and counter the advice of CGDA to abolish OROP altogether, he suggested President, TSEWA should go to Delhi and brief the advocates of IESM. TSEWA should bear all the expenditure for such a trip.
There was heated discussion on this issue.
The President brought the following issues to the notice of the Core Committee:-
(a) IESM did not ask for any such help. He sent 10 MS Excel tables to Maj Gen Satbir Singh (Retd) in spite of his personal differences with him. It was done solely to help IESM win the case of OROP in Hon’ble Supreme Court.
(b) Even if a layman who knows nothing of OROP sees one of the tables where in the pension for any rank for any qualifying service from OROP – 2013 to Jun 2019 will come to the conclusion that yearly revision of OROP is required as pension keep increasing every year.
(c) Every pensioner is likely to gain by Rs 2000 to Rs 14000 if OROP – 2018 is implemented. For example a Colonel SG with Qualifying service of 29.50 years to 33 or more years is fixed pension as on Jan 2016 of Rs 92,855 (= 36130 x 2.57). But Colonel with service of 33 or more years retired in calendar year 2018 is fixed pension of Rs 1,06,550.
(d) Lt Col VS Ramana Reddy (Retd) on examining the MS Excel table said few of those retired after Jul 2014 got lesser pension than pensioners of OROP – 2013.
(e) The President informed that CGDA has also pointed out this anomaly and exaggerated that Lt Cols retired in the period Jul 2014 and Dec 2015 got lesser pension than in OROP – 2013. CGDA told the Min of Def (ESW) that 94.3% of Lt Cols got lesser pension. There are two reasons for such an anomaly. One is those who retired in the period Jul 2014 and Dec 2015 got their promotions very late due to non-availability of vacancies in their trade in the case of JCOs / OR. Their pay in pay band at the time of their retirement is lesser than Average Pay in pay band of those retried in calendar year 2013. Those who were benefited by OROP – 2013 with basic pay lesser than Average basic pay got their pension enhanced to Average pension of a rank and qualifying service. But this benefit was not extended to those who retired in the period Jul 2014 to Dec 2015. They continued to draw only increments which are still lesser than Average basic pay of those retired in calendar year 2013. The second reason those Lt Cols who have pre-commission service like SL Officers, SCOs and RCOs retired in the period Jul 2014 to Dec 2015 were fixed pension based on last drawn pay. The last drawn pay was dependent upon the commissioned service. Most of the officers with pre-commission service has commissioned service ranging between 15 to 25 years only as their pre – commission service was in the range of 5 to 20 years. There were few RCOs who had pre – commission service of 20 years and their commissioned service was only 15 to 20 years. Therefore, their pension at the time of retirement was lesser than OROP – 2013 pensioners who got the benefit of counting their pre – commission service for pension. But such Lt Cols are not more than 15 to 20%. They will get higher pension getting benefit of their pre – commission service in OROP – 2018.
(f) The President also informed the Core Committee that next date of hearing on 06 Aug 2019 is unlikely to result in delivery of judgment by Hon’ble Supreme Court. The Govt counsel will argue stating that the Govt of India, Ministry of Defence constituted a committee on 14 Jun 2019 chaired by CGDA to work out modality of OROP. On this ground alone, he will seek adjournment. The Hon’ble Supreme Court in all probability will accede to the request of the Govt counsel and give next date of hearing which may be after three to four months.
(g) The President suggested to the Core Committee if Chairman IESM invites him to brief their advocates, then he has no hesitation to go to Delhi and explain why OROP – 2018 should be implemented with yearly revision of pension.
Recommendation of the Core Committee. The Core Committee recommended that President TSEWA should go to Delhi to assist the advocates of IESM in OROP case provided the Chairman IESM sends such an invitation. TSEWA will bear all the expenditure on this trip
Item III: Closure of ECHS Polyclinics Co-located with MHs in Southern Command. The General Secretary informed that HQ Southern Command constituted a Board of Officers (BOO) with Maj Gen (Med) Dakshin Bharat Area as President to recommend closure of ECHS polyclinics co located with MHs.
The Core Committee discussed this issue at length. The consensus is the procedure as exists today is the medical officer or Medical specialist in ECHS polyclinics refer the ECHS members to specialist in MHs. In case the facility to carry out medical procedure exists and bed capacity is available, then the patient is treated in MH and discharged.
Therefore, there is nothing new in the BOO. This has been in vogue since four to five years to utilize the spare capacity of the MHs. Though in majority of cases, the ECHS members are being referred by Specialists in MHs to empaneled hospitals as they do not have requisite support to treat the ECHS patients. MHs are basically meant for serving fraternity and not for ESMs and their dependents.
Recommendation of the Core Committee. The Core Committee recommended that we should wait for final decision from HQ Southern Command in the matter. In case, the ECHS polyclinics co-located with MHs are closed, the repercussion on elderly members of ECHS should be seen in getting timely medical help. ECHS was created as MHs are unable to take load of ESM community.
Item IV: Demise of Lt Col SP Singh (Retd) Member TSEWA. The General Secretary informed that mail came from one of the members of TSEWA that Lt Col SP Singh (Retd), a member of TSEWA expired. He as General Secretary has sent a condolence letter to the family members. He also told that the same membership no of the deceased member is given to his wife. Any help required from TSEWA shall be provided to the family in distress.
Recommendation of Core Committee. The Core Committee recommended that this be included as a regular procedure whenever such untimely demises of members of TSEWA takes place.
Item V: Recognition of Services Being Rendered by Hav Harish Asthana, President, TSEWA, UP. The General Secretary lauded the self-less services of Hav Harish Asthana, President, TSEWA, UP in resolving grievances of thousands of ESM all over India. Though he is to look after ESMs and family pensioners of UP, he helps any ESM or family pensioner located anywhere in the country. He cited an example a lady who got her pension arrears donated Rs 28,001 to TSEWA. She got hefty arrears due to persistent efforts of Hav Harish Asthana. Therefore, there is a need to recognize his services and he should be sent a suitable letter applauding his services to ESM fraternity.
Recommendation of the Core Committee. The Core Committee recommended a letter signed by President, TSEWA, applauding self-less services of Hav Harish Asthana be sent to him on the letter head of TSEWA.
Item VI: Identification of Suitable Member of TSEWA in Tri-Cities to Grow. The General Secretary informed that Cmde KS Sandhu (Retd), President, TSEWA Mumbai Metro appraised him that there are large number of ESMs settled down in Panchkula, Mohali and Chandigarh. On date, we do not have any member in the Tri cities to carry out TSEWA work. Therefore, there is a necessity to identify a member of TSEWA who can be nominated as President, TSEWA Tri-cities to take up work of TSEWA.
Recommendation of the Core Committee. The Core Committee recommended all members of TSEWA should identify a suitable person of any rank to be President of TSEWA, Tri-cities.
Points from Cmde Sudheer Parakala, Vice – President.
Item VII. He suggested Brig Kartar Singh (Retd), President NCESMO should immediately write a letter to Hon’ble Raksha Mantri to convene third meeting of NCESMO. The Hon’ble RM be appraised that two such meetings were held with previous RM in Nov 2018 and Feb 2019. Unless such a letter is sent by President, NCESMO to the Hon’ble RM, there may not be any progress in having the third meeting of NCESMO.
Recommendation of Core Committee. The Core Committee recommended that President, TSEWA being Vice – President should immediately request Brig Kartar Singh, President, NCESMO to write a letter to Hon’ble RM for third meeting of NCESMO.
Item VIII. Vice President, TSEWA suggested that 10 tables on OROP prepared by President, TSEWA should be sent to PMO, RM and CGDA.
Recommendation of Core Committee. The Core Committee requested the President, TSEWA to forward the tables on OROP to PMO, RM and CGDA.
There being no other point from the members of Core Committee, the President declared the meeting as closed.
Brig CS Vidyasagar (Retd)