For many ex-servicemen the wait has been a long one. Their demand and fight for One Rank One Pension will become a reality soon.
Sources tell OneIndia that the defence ministry is working over time to ensure that the same is implemented in quick time.
Manohar Parrikar, the defence minister of India was recently quoted as saying that the announcement of its implementation would be made in 4 to 8 weeks.
Significance of OROP
It is an equal demand for pensions. If an officer has retired last year and there is an increase in the pensions the following year owing to enhancements by the pay commissions then it is implemented only prospectively. Basically if an officer has retired in 1990 in the current scenario he is not entitled for an enhanced pension if the same is implemented during the later years.
The argument has been that the pension for officers of the same rank should remain the same at all times. This the ex servicemen had demanded as the costs of living was going up and the hike in pensions should benefit all and not just those who have recently retired.
The government has time and again assured the ex servicemen that the OROP will be implemented. It was promised during the elections and even the Prime Minister had said that he was blessed to be the one implementing it.
However there are certain teething issues that the government is facing on this front. Several ex servicemen say that they have done the rounds of various offices several times. However there has never been any clear response. They also have stated several times that the government or the political class needs to step on the gas pedal to push this issue through.
Government sources say that the finance minister had already allocated Rs 1000 crore for the OROP. This itself is an indication that the government is committed to the cause. We agree there have been delays but work is on in full throttle now to dismantle all those bureaucratic hassles which had slowed down the process.
The government says that unlike the previous regime we will not just make announcements and then forget about it. There are 24 lakh pensioners and all of it has to be taken into consideration.
There was also a bit of a delay as when the government took over it had appointed one man to handle both defence and finance. However now with the new defence minister taking charge this issue is being exclusively looked into. All bureaucratic hassles have been wiped out and an exclusive team is working on it, sources in the ministry informed.