The Defence Department has taken up a plan to computerise the data of pensioners and dependents for ensuring accuracy in the fixation of pension for the retired personnel.
Stating this while inaugurating the two-day ‘Defence Pension Adalat’ organised by the Controller General of Defence Accounts and the Principal Controller of Defence Accounts (Pensions), Allahabad, in the city on Thursday, the Director General (Manpower, Planning and Personnel Services), Adjutant General’s Branch, Union Ministry of Defence, Lt. Gen. V.K. Chaturvedi, said that the country accounted for about 22.50 lakh Defence pensioners, including one lakh pensioners in Tamil Nadu. The Centre had sanctioned a budget support of Rs.21,790 crore for the Defence pensioners for the current fiscal.
As and when the recommendations of a new Pay Commission were implemented, some anomalies or other cropped up in fixing the revised pension, especially in the case of senior and aged pensioners. "We have pensioners who had participated in the Wold War II. Vital data such as date of birth, nominee/s, number of dependents have not been either recorded in the earlier decades or not available in the case of aged pensioners," he said adding that non-availability of these vital data was a major handicap in issuing revised pension pay orders (PPOs). The objective of the automation was to facilitate the Defence Department to directly issue the PPOs, without the assistance of bank or other agencies.
Lt. Gen. Chaturvedi appealed to the bank officials to redress the grievances of Defence pensioners on a priority basis. Referring to the demand for the introduction of ‘one cadre – one pension’ scheme by the Defence pensioners, he admitted that there were some difference in the quantum of pension among the pensioners retiring from the same post. He said that a feasible solution was being worked out to redress this major grievance of the junior pensioners.
The objective of the ‘adalat’ was to ensure and expedite the sanctioning of due benefits to the pensioners, he said and appealed to pensioners and their dependents to feel free to represent their grievances.
The Principal Controller of Defence Accounts (Pensions), Allahabad, A. K.Chopra; Director General (Resettlement), Army Headquarters, New Delhi, Maj. Gen. S. G. Chatterjee; Offg. General Officer Commanding, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Karnataka, Maj.Gen. Nitin Kohli; the Controller of Defence Accounts (Pensions), Allahabad, G. D. Pungle were among those who spoke.
As many as 250 applications were received in advance of which 68 had already been settled and the remaining applications had been referred to the respective agencies for immediate redress, according to a press note issued on the occasion. About 600 pensioners submitted their applications on the first day of the ‘adalat’ which concludes on Friday.