NEW DELHI: Expressing solidarity with ex-servicemen seeking implementation of One Rank One Pension scheme, Union Minister Gen (retd) V K Singh’s elder daughter Mrinalini Singh on Sunday joined the stir here.
She termed their demand as “just” and suggested that her father, a former Army Chief, should also join the stir.
Though several ex-servicemen reached India Gate on Sunday to lay a wreath at Amar Jawan Jyoti, the security personnel did not allow them to do so. They were allowed only to lit candles.
Mrinalini, wife of a serving Army officer, said she had full faith in Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who has promised to implement the OROP. “This is a just cause and the matter has been pending for many years. I have come here as the daughter of an ex-serviceman to lend support to the veterans who have served the country, but are now protesting for their rights for over two months,” Mrinalini said.
Asked if her father, a junior minister in the Ministry of External Affairs, had approved of her joining the protest since he is serving in the government, she said, “I have not sought his permission and neither do I need his permission.”
Mrinalini said she had come straight from Hisar in Haryana “because I feel for the cause. A few years down the line, I will also become the wife of an ex-serviceman. Our previous governments had promised to do something. This government looks committed towards fulfilling it,” she added.
Asked whether her father should also join the protest, she said, “I am going to meet him. I will definitely ask him to come and join the protest.”
Ex-servicemen are likely to meet Modi soon to press for early implementation of the OROP.
Top government officials have indicated that an announcement could come very soon as the government does not want to be embarrassed by the veterans, who have decided to boycott the golden jubilee celebrations of the India-Pakistan war of 1965 beginning August 28.