The government so far has been categorical that OROP is only for the armed forces and there is no plan of including paramilitary forces under the scheme which seeks to give same pension to defence personnel of the same rank irrespective of their year of retirement.
After government approved OROP for armed forces in accordance with the promise made by Narendra Modi in the run-up to the parliamentary elections in 2014, paramilitary forces are also planning to raise demand for implementation of a similar scheme. According to a report published in a leading daily, paramilitary veterans have decided to launch an indefinite dharna in Jantar Mantar from November 2 demanding OROP. The report says that the veterans feel that this is the right time to raise the demand forcefully just before the all-important Bihar asembly elections. The veterans, united under the umbrella of the All-India Central Paramilitary Forces Ex-Servicemen Welfare Association (AICPMFEWA), are now planning to start the OROP demand movement, even when the government has not managed to quell the demands of armed forces satisfactorily. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The government so far has been categorical that OROP is only for the armed forces and there is no plan of including paramilitary forces under the scheme which seeks to give same pension to defence personnel of the same rank irrespective of their year of retirement. The prevailing argument for giving OROP to armed forces is that most retire very early to keep the unit lean and fit. Hence, they lose out on pay hikes. However, the report quotes paramilitary veterans who believe they are entitled to the pension scheme too for being the first line of defence on both the border and also for maintaining internal security.The AICPMFEWA says, “It is a known fact that paramilitary forces are the first line of defence in every security operation, whether it is on the border or internal security. Paramilitary forces are in the war field 24×365 days, while the defence forces enjoying ‘peace time’ comfortably in their well secured barracks. The government is pouring all facilities to them and totally neglecting paramilitary men. We need equal status and equal facilities” .There are an estimated 9 lakh paramilitary veterans in the country of which around one-third is eligible for OROP. The estimated cost may be around Rs.3,000 crores per year to begin with, only to increase with subsequent pay revisions.Already the movement has gathered steam in the social media. Apart from OROP, ex paramilitary men have eight more demands including better medical facility and exempting them from new contributory pension system.