One-Rank One-Pension is getting final Shape – Budget 2015
Achchey Din seems likely to dawn on the armed forces, or ex-personnel in particular. The government is giving final shape to their long standing demand of adopting One-Rank One-Pension (OROP).
Bureaucrats are currently burning midnight oil to pore over the fine print of at least four options to implement the OROP scheme. A source in government, aware of the developments, says a decision is expected soon and a large provision in the Budget, or soon after.
“We are very hopeful that the long overdue injustice to the armed forces will be reversed in this budget,” says Maj Gen Satbir Singh (Retd) who leads the IESM or Indian Ex-Servicemen Movement, which lobbied intensely for OROP since 2008. “Both UPA and NDA have agreed to our OROP so we see no reason that it will be held back now,” he says.
For 40 years the retirees, now numbering three million, have been bristling under what they perceive as “neglect and humiliation” by political parties and successive governments. Its extreme manifestation, from their perspective, was the denial of OROP. Lack of empirical data on the cost of this pension, plus political reluctance of the parties fuelled much of the denial and delay. The former military staff launched public agitations to make their case, often embarrassing the government.