Dear Hon’ble Raksha Mantri ji,
Payment of OROP Arrears at Gp Y Level. I had earlier requested you through an e-mail to give suitable instructions through PCDA (Pensions) Allahabad to advise all CPPCs of banks to remit arrears of OROP based on group Y (lowest group) to all those who are paid pension as on Jun 2014. Till today as per data furnished by your ministry, One Time Increase has been remitted to 19,12,520 beneficiaries and 1,50,313 as on 02 Nov 2016 have not yet been paid. The banks have been instructed by Pension Sanctioning Authorities (PSAs) not to pay arrears unless the PPO of pensioners have (a) rank (b) Qualifying Service (c) Group X or Y.
Sir, all pensioners who get pension till Jun 2014 would have got arrears within two months if you had accepted my suggestion. In case PPOs do not show Group then pay them as per group Y ,which is lowest. This would have resulted all beneficiaries get some arrears by now. Such a simple thing should have been initiated suo-moto by PSAs. If a veteran belonged to X group did not have his group mentioned in his PPO due to some reason but paid at Y group, then arrears could have been easily worked out and paid later.
CPPCs of banks tell us PSAs do not respond with correct group in spite of sending details as per Appx X of Circular 555. So they are unable to remit arrears to beneficiaries.
Kindly issue instructions that even if group is not found in PPOs all beneficiaries be paid as per Group Y. You will find in next 10 days balance 1.5 lakh beneficiaries will get arrears. You will get accolades instead of severe criticism.
Your ministry could have got compliments for remitting Rs 5,507 crores. You have given such huge financial benefit yet you are getting adverse publicity since 02 Nov 2016. Had your PSAs taken this action or your ministry empowered them, I am afraid, Sub Ramkishan Grewal of Haryana would not committed suicide and your ministry would not have been in eye of storm.
I can understand you receive thousands of such mails a day and it is not possible for you as hon’ble RM to oversee every e-mail and initiate action on that. You have given One Time Increase in pension but propagating it wrongly as OROP. Now the whole country knew NDA – II did not give OROP but given only one time increase in pension.
Sir,I have the following Corrective Suggestions for your imdt consideration and Implementation to drastically Improve the Process of payment of Pensions & Arrrears to Armed Forces Veterans which will enhance the credibility & Image of You and NDA-II govt:
1. Grievance Officer set up in Min of Def. May I, Sir, humbly request you to have a system in your office by which every e-mail addressed to you is acted upon by having some suitable staff officer well versed with pensions to go into grievance of every veteran and family pensioner and issue suitable instructions to concerned authority. You may get some from Accounts branch of Navy and IAF to work in your office?
2. Monitoring Agency in PSAs. Veterans are losing faith in the existing system of PSAs. You are violating a simple fact. Stake holders must have their say. Is it difficult for you to induct a percentage of serving soldiers into PSAs? Civilians who do not know problems of veterans and family pensioners are hiding their incompetence and in efficiency. Then there may be more incidents like (late) Sub Ramkishan Grewal, which can be avoided.
3. Acknowlegment of Grievances. PSAs have perfected the art of not acknowledging any e-mail or letter from veterans. Even for queries posed through RTI route seldom get answers. It is their bounden duty to act upon every grievance of veterans as it forms part of their charter . You may kindly go into the present set up of PSAs.
4. Arrears. PSAs cannot outsource their solemn duty of working out arrears for each rank, for each length of service and for each group whenever pensions go up. Please do NOT expect banks to work out arrears. They do not have the domain knowledge to understand complex defence pensions. The arrears are required to be worked out by PSAs who have the expertise. Banks should be simply told to pay arrears as per working sheets provided PSAs .
5. Arrears Tables of TSEWA. Tri Services Ex-Servicemen Welfare Associ tion (TSEWA) has been helping banks by giving them our tables of arrears whenever due from ranks of Sepoy Group X to Lt Gen (HAG+). If you permit we can send you those tables for each type of arrears like (a) 6th CPC arrears, (b) One Time Increase in Pension (your OROP) arrears, (b) Arrears on account of 33 year de-linking vide Circular 568 and (d) 7th CPC arrears which you can countercheck and instruct CPPCs to pay arrears.If you give the responsibility of working out arrears to TSEWA we will ensure any type of arrears are remitted to the beneficiaries within 30 working days. TSEWA will not charge Min of Def even a paisa. Please give us a chance to display our expertise as free service to Veterans and the Govt.
6. Data of Pensionsers. I also like to bring to your kind notice, Sir, PCDA (P) Allahabad in a written reply to RTI Query admit that they do not have details of pensioners rank wise, group wise and length of service wise yet they pay Rs 29,000 crores per annum as pensions. I cannot understand how PCDA (P) Allahabad account for such huge sum if they do not have basic data of pensioners.
7. Data of Disabled Soliders. 7th CPC informed that CGDA did not have data of disabled soldiers prior to 2007-08. Who is supposed to have data of disabled soldiers Sir? When disabled soldier do get higher pension due to their disability should not PSAs have this data with them rank wise, percentage of disability wise? In this digital world is it difficult to have such data?
You can seek help of Ex-Servicemen who will assist PSAs in compiling data. Without data how can PSAs project requirement of funds whenever pensions are hiked?
Sir, these are very vital issues which should be looked into carefully lest another helpless veteran follow in the footsteps of (late) Sub Ramkishan Grewal .
8. Case of Sep Baldev Raj, a War Wounded Soldier. I am enclosing a mail received from a war wounded soldier of IPKF, Srilanka. Can we, Sir, be so insensitive to our war disabled soldiers? Kindly look into the case and see suitable instructions are issued to alleviate his suffering
9. Reports and Returns. Sir, I can assure you that no veteran or family pensioner will ever approach you if PSAs are responsive to their grievances. The grievance redressal mechanism of PSAs needs to be critically examined and ensure you get monthly reports of how many grievances are received and how many have been redressed.
10. Composition of DAD. There is an urgent need for DAD to have mix of Serving personnel, ESMs and Civilians. Alternatively, Kindly have 50% of staff in DAD from Ex-Servicemen community who understand problem of veterans and family pensioners.
11. Composition of DESW, MoD. kindly have some representation of serving armed forces personnel and Ex-Servicemen in Dept of Ex-Servicemen Welfare who understand problems of veterans and family pensioners. Unless you undertake major reforms in Min of Def you will have many unfortunate incidents taking place and fine reputation of your Govt will be besmirched.
Anticapting a positive and favourable response from you Sir
Brig CS Vidyasagar (Rtd)
Mail from Sep Baldev Raj, War Wounded Soldier in Sri Lanka
To Brig CS Vidyasagar (Rtd) President, TSEWA Sub:- NON REMITTANCE OF OROP ARREARS AND PENSION CPPC PUNJAB NATIONAL BANK CPPC CHANDIGRAH Respected Sir I No 13616896Y Ex Speoy Baldeev Raj, Special Force 9 PARA (War Worded Soldier IPKF, Sri Lanka) Vill – Knipala, PO – Pipli , Teh – Thanesar, Distt- Kurukshetra, State – Haryana I getting pension Under PPO No D/00195/1993 and DE/Corr/040011/2012 (ARMY) , Punjab National Bank, Pipli (Distt- Kurukshetra State Haryana Bank Code 2949) my pension account No 2949000300068634 PNB, Pipli Branch and CPPC not crediting my One Rank One Pension (OROP) arrears and Pension sanctioned by Govt of India vide their Circular No : 555 dated 04 Feb 2016. It is therefore prayed that the above said details may kindly be sent to the applicant as well as the PNB, Pipli Branch and CPPC of the applicant for payment as applicant has requested the Punjab National Bank, Pipli Branch and CPPC so many times but the PNB, Pipli Branch and CPPC did not care to the genius request of the applicant. I bring to your notice about the incomplete release of PCDA Circular No 555 dated 04 Feb 2016 OROP arrears and request that instructions be issued for release of my Arrears and Pension . If we go the bank says talk to CPPC and CPPC says please concern to your bank, where should a individual will go ? mis-interpretation of data is only among the pensions. Bank paid my old Service pension Rs 3500 plus DA not benefit OROP table no 7 qualify service 6 Years Rs 5868 Department of Pensions & Pensioners Welfare has issued instructions to all banks to institute a mechanism by which the Managers of the pension paying branches resolve pensioners issues upfront and do not refer the issues to CPPC. You are kindly requested to take up the case with higher authorities of the Bank for early payment of OROP arrears, as all most all the Banks have paid the same. With thanks & regards, Yours faithfully, Ex Sep Baldeev Raj (War Worded, IPKF Sri Lanka) Mob No – 9991198977 Email Address :- firstname.lastname@example.org