HYDERABAD: After the Union Cabinet approved medical facilities under Ex-Servicemen Contributory Health Scheme (ECHS) for various Short Service Commissions (SSC) personnel on Wednesday, the war veterans of 1970 Indo-China war appreciated the move.
However, they now want the Defence Ministry, Army headquarters and the Chief Minister to consider waiving of the `60,000 which has to be given as one time enrolment fee.
“The ECHS benefit which has been dolled out now is viable for the SSC as they have a lot more years of life to live. However, for war veterans like us who were recruited under Emergency Commissioned Office, our one leg is here and one in grave. It is insensitive to ask us to pay `60,000 when we have been fighting for this basic facility since 40 years,” noted Captain (retired) L Pandu Ranga Reddy of Gurkha Rifles.
He has now shot a letter to the PM, Chief of Army Staff and CMs of the two Telugu States to bare the costs of the amount utilising their funds. “In the way war widows have been exempted from one-time contribution, we urge them to waive it off for us octogenarians, who will not live long,” Captain Reddy said.
There are nearly 34 officers with their spouses in the Telugu states who would have to pay `20,40,000 for one time contribution. Reddy wants this amount to be released through CM’s Relief Fund.