BENGALURU: After almost 40 years of waiting, the announcement of the One Rank One Pension (OROP) scheme on Saturday has come as a great relief to the retired defence personnel.
However, veterans and other personnel feel the Central government has not addressed all their demands. When contacted by Express, they pointed out a few lacunae in the scheme, which might hamper its execution.
OROP implies uniform pension for armed forces personnel retiring in the same rank with the same length of service irrespective of the date of retirement.
Lt Gen (retd) U K Ganguly, who served the armed forces for at least 30 years, said that the judicial commission to be set up for the implementation of OROP must comprise people who understand the needs of the defence personnel.
“There is no point if bureaucrats are appointed instead of defence personnel. We would like the Ministry of Defence to look into this. Secondly, some sort of package must be given to those who opt to retire early. The OROP announced does not cover them,” he said.
Maj Gen (retd) K R Prasad said that the essence of the scheme must not be diluted. “The review of the scheme has been fixed at five years, which is too long a period. If this is the case, it will be a ‘one rank five pension’ scheme, which will not be fair to everyone. A review has to be done every year so that the scheme is executed perfectly,” he said.
Maj Gen (retd) Katti, speaking to Express from Belagavi, also said that the review of the scheme should not take five years. “Even if it is reviewed after two or three years, it is fine,” he said.
He said that there should be clarity on the package, if any, for those who had sought premature retirement.
“However, there is a general happy feeling as we have waited for 40 long years. The issue gained momentum after Prime Minister Narendra Modi assured former service personnel that the scheme would be implemented. It is a good thing,” he said.