CM’s order rebuilds ex-servicemen’s hope - The New Indian Express

CM’s order rebuilds ex-servicemen’s hope

Published: 24th August 2012 08:27 AM

Last Updated: 24th August 2012 08:27 AM

The ex-servicemen community has thanked Chief Minister Jayalalithaa for sanctioning `2.19 crore towards rebuilding the old office premises of the Ex-servicemen Welfare, in Vellore.

K Mathivanan, president of the Katpadi Ex-sainik Seva Sangam said Vellore which housed one of the highest population of ex-servicemen and serving personnel in the country, certainly deserved a spacious and well-equipped office premises to extend better facilities and services. The gesture of the Chief Minister in this regard was timely, he added.

Vellore had housed one of the earliest ex-servicemen welfare offices in the State, the foundation for which had been laid by the then Governor of Madras, Sir Arthur Hope on March 7, 1945, on the ring road of Vellore Fort. It was named after him as ‘Hope Ex-service Centre’. The building was completed in the same year and was declared open by Sir Normal Strathie, advisor to the Governor of Madras on November 29, 1945. Khan Bhadur S Ahmed Ali was the president of the District Soldiers, Sailors and Airmen (DSSA) Board then.

 As the 60-year-old building had developed cracks and posed threats to safety, the office was shifted to ‘Jawans Bhavan’ building on the officers line.

The existing dilapidated structures would be replaced with a new two-storied building with 4,844 sqft ground floor and 5,888 sqft, each of first and second floor. While the ground floor would be occupied by the ex-servicemen welfare office, the first floor would have a nationalised bank. A part of the second floor would be rented to government departments.

The premises would also have a dormitory facility and two or three rooms that can be used as guestrooms for directorate’s senior officials to stay. The office would be equipped with communication and Internet facilities. The construction, being entrusted with the PWD, is likely to begin shortly.

The ex-servicemen welfare office has been extending various services to the 50,000 plus ex-servicemen and serving personnel, somewhat similar to what the district social welfare has been offering to the general public. The office is providing welfare assistance to the tune of `15 lakh per month, in terms of pensions (for veterans and war widows) and educational scholarships. The office is also helping veterans secure employment in various sectors besides focusing on their healthcare requirements.

It is also liaisoning with government departments to establish a Kendriya Vidyalaya at Vellore shortly.

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