Assembly passes resolution on increasing ex-servicemen pension
Shimla, Apr 3 (UNI) The Himachal Pradesh Assembly today unanimously passed a resolution calling upon the Union Government to enhance the pension of ex-servicemen from Subedar and lower ranks to bring it at par with other categories of employees according to the recommendations of Fifth Pay Commission.
The matter was raised by Vijay Singh Mankotia (Congress) and received support from members cutting across party lines.
Replying to the debate, state Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh said anomalies in pensions of various categories had persisted for long and Centre had taken some steps to meet the demand for ''one rank one pension'' but these were not sufficient to remove the anomalies altogether.
Raising the issue, Mr Mankotia said the condition of 33 years of service for enhanced pensionary benefits to ex-servicemen on lower ranks was ridiculous as they retired at the age of 35 after rendering 15 to 18 years of service.
He cautioned that this anomaly in pension was creating a divide among retired servicemen, which did not argue well for the country, as these jawans were the real combat force of the country.
Participating in the debate, former chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal supported Mr Mankotia's contention that five northern states of the country had been sending maximum persons to the army and they should jointly take up the matter with the centre.
UNI AS DP PA PC2153