OROP issue is not dead

Subedar (retired) Ram Kishan Grewal’s suicide should be a wake-up call for the government as it is a reflection of the deep anguish among the veterans over the OROP issue

rahul

Rahul Dass | November 3, 2016


#Subedar Grewal   #OROP  

Source: Mannat Sharma/commons.wikimedia

Subedar Grewal’s decision to consume poison and kill himself over One Rank One Pension (OROP) has brought back into sharp focus an emotive issue that has seen veterans waging a battle over what they perceive as something that is unfair and unjust.

The veterans are right.

The government needs to pay serious attention to their demands and quickly remove the anomalies. After all they have served the country in exceedingly difficult conditions and then after retirement they now have to fight for OROP. After much dilly-dallying the government had said in 2015 that it was implementing OROP. However, shortcomings remain and that rankle the veterans.

Take the case of Subedar Grewal who was reportedly drawing comparatively less pension than he was authorised for. It must have been quite frustrating for the veteran to get the anomaly rectified. That frustration probably led to him committing suicide.

His last telephone call to his son should be enough to shake our collective conscience. He can be heard saying: “I am sitting near India Gate and I have consumed poison. The government is doing injustice to jawans and I can’t tolerate this. I am a man of principle. I am sacrificing my life for the betterment my family, ex-soldiers and my nation.”

OROP implies that military personnel retiring at the same rank with the same length of service, irrespective of their date of retirement, will get the same pension.

On September 5, 2015, the central government decided to implement the scheme.

Just days before Grewal killed himself, prime minister Narendra Modi said that the first installment of nearly Rs 5,500 crore had been paid for implementing the OROP scheme.

Following Subedar Grewal’s suicide, political parties were quick to get political mileage out of it. Right from Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi to Aam Aadmi Party leader and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal, all rushed to meet his family members at the hospital, where they were detained amidst much drama.

If indeed the political parties are so keen to look after the welfare of the veterans, they clearly need to do more.

The politicians perhaps do realise that Subedar Grewal’s death would have an impact on the forthcoming assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh. The state sends the highest number of recruits to the armed forces, according to a written reply by the defence ministry to a question raised by Shiv Sena MP Sadashiv Lokhande in 2014.

Subedar Grewal is dead, but the OROP issue lives on – and determined veterans will clearly not allow the issue to die out.

Read: Status report on OROP

 

Comments

 

Other News

Stories to read over the weekend

At one time these pale rooms of the Delhi commission for women looked like sleepy corners of officialdom; they are now best described as a bustling sarkari office. The woman who transformed this moribund organisation hardly looks like a powerful leader. Dressed in casual blue jeans and loose deni

Tata Trusts, PFA to build state-of-the-art veterinary hospital

Tata Trusts and People For Animals (PFA) announced their collaboration to build a state-of-the-art, multi-specialty veterinary hospital and emergency clinic at Navi Mumbai to serve the needs of all domestic and farm animals at affordable rates.   The hospital will be built in Kala

The shot just got smarter

A long queue of women, infants in their arms, extends outside the immunisation room at the community health centre (CHC) in Bhangel village, Noida, a pink double-storey building beside a bustling market. Unmindful of the chit-chatting and baby babble, Mariamma Samuel, an auxiliary nurse-cum-midwi

Do you think fugitive industrialist Vijay Mallya will be extradited from Britain to India?

Do you think fugitive industrialist Vijay Mallya will be extradited from Britain to India?

Reform first, privatise later: Bibek Debroy to railways

Before privatisation and corporatisation, the Indian Railways need to undertake major reforms including commercial accounting, decentralisation and human resource among others, said Bibek Debroy, economist and member, NITI Aayog at Railways Reforms and Governance Conclave organised by Governance Now on Fri

NTPC plans for 32 GW installed capacity via renewable sources

NTPC Ltd has raised Rs 2,000 crore through green masala bonds in overseas market under its $4 billion medium term note programme, union minister Piyush Goyal informed the Lok Sabha. The proceeds of these bonds will be used for financing renewable energy projects in accordance with applicable

Video

हमेशा रहें चुनाव के लिए तैयार - मोदी ने कहा सांसदों से

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter