Govt in agreement on 'one rank one pension': Army chief
"I have written twice to the central government on the issue of one rank one pension and it has agreed to it in principle," he said while addressing a rally of ex-servicemen at Mahar Regiment Centre Ground here. He said the Defence Minister has assured to look into the matter seriously after the Budget session of Parliament.
Implementation of one rank one pension will put a financial burden of Rs 1,300 crore on the Government, he said, adding all political parties have backed the demand. Once implemented, it will resolve all anomalies related to the ex-servicemen's pension and bring uniformity in the post-retirement scheme, the Army chief maintained.
General Singh blamed communication gap for delay in redressal of grievances of the ex-servicemen. He said directives have been issued to officials concerned to ensure they are in regular touch with ex- servicemen and their widows and resolve their problems related to pension, healthcare and canteen facilities among others.
General Singh said a toll-free helpline number was being launched to receive complaints of ex-servicemen and ensure their speedy resolution. The service will be headed by a retired Brigadier level officer. Army regiments and units have been directed to constitute special teams to look into the grievances, he said.
The Army chief said after the formation of special teams Rs 22 crore was given to retired servicemen in pending arrears in Rajasthan. Earlier in the day, General Singh arrived at Bhopal Airport and left for Sagar, around 180km from the state capital, in a helicopter.