After outrage among some veterans over the government failing to come through on the One Rank One Pension scheme, Prime Minister on Saturday in an interview said that the government was committed.
This is what the Prime Minister tweeted on Saturday morning:
The tweet linked to an interview with the Prime Minister that was published in the Tribune in which he told the newspaper that they were still in consultation with defence personnel regarding the definition of the term.
However, what has attracted ire of skeptics is that the statement doesn’t specify when the government plans to implement it.
“Our government is here for five years, and we cannot do anything without consulting the people concerned. The dialogue is being actively pursued. There is no need to have any doubt on this,” he told the newspaper.
The Prime Minister said that the issue was not a political agenda for him but there were too many definitions of the scheme present and until there was a scheme on which all stakeholders agree, it can’t be taken forward.
The statement comes even as the government faces criticism from veterans over not implementing the scheme despite having promised to do so before the polls in 2014. Ex-defence personnel have threatened a nation-wide stir against the delay in implementing the scheme and even a hunger strike.
OROP has been a long-standing demand of the over two million ex-servicemen of India. It seeks to ensure that a uniform pension is paid to the defence personnel retiring in the same rank with the same length of service, irrespective of their date of retirement. The scheme is estimated to cost around Rs 8,600 crore initially and subsequently several crore rupees annually.
Currently, all pre 2006 (the year the 6th pay panel recommendations became effective) pensioners receive lesser pension than not only their counterparts but also their juniors.