Saturday, January 10, 2009

Confirming Solidarity with IESM by Club-20

To: Chairman IESM

Dear Sir,
1. In continuation of our interaction with the IESM during the last few weeks, we a few members of the Club-20, who are in Delhi have planned to visit the IESM Shamiyana on Jantar Mantar Road on 11 Jan 09, at 1100 Hrs to confirm our solidarity with the IESM by garlanding the 6 veterans currently on hunger strike/fast unto death. It will infact be our honour to meet them in person and express our gratitude for holding this beacon of light so bravely.

2. Just by way of introduction, we wish to apprise your good-self that Club-20 is an informal group of retired IAF engineer officers (of DEO-20: Directly Entry Course-20, of 1962 batch) who are in the age band of 70+1 and are spread all over India, on settlement after retirement. Although the number is not very large but we keep in touch with each other through internet. It is while surfing your web/blog that we learnt details of IESM and now feel proud that we are a part of it.

3. The IES Movement is definitely a monumental stride by the IES for not only creating awareness among the retirees but also a great source of inspiration for others. it is, infact, a matter of time when the whole country will notice and appreciate it. And the GOI will recognise it.

4. With regards and good wishes for the IESM
Gp Capt (Retd)
Member Club-20

IESM: Discriminatory Pension Tables further distorted by SCPC

The IESM has very strongly taken up the demand of One Rank One Pension (OROP). It is the bounden duty of every ESM to strengthen the Movement by joining it with physical moral and spiritual support to get “Justice for the Defence Service”. The present system of giving less pension to the older pensioners is discriminatory. It leads to serious intra-rank and even inter-rank distortions as seen from the following tables:

Maj Gen (Retd) Satbir Singh, SM
Vice Chairman Indian ESM Movement
Pre 01.01.96 Lt Col (TS)
Basic pension: Rs7350 Revised pension: Rs16611

SCPC: Payment of Pensions

Dear James,
Officers are being paid pensions thru banks, who are working out the entitlements of arrears etc based on directives from the MOD. A number of banks are invloved taking in to account that veteran officers are living all over India. Different banks are likely to interpret and authorise varied pension entitlements for offcers of same rank or authorise incorrect amounts. WHO IN THE GOVERNMENT IS SUPPOSED TO CHECK AND ENSURE THAT ALL VETERAN OFFICERS GET CORRECT AMOUNT OF PENSION!!

As far as I know, after a Pay Commission, the CDA should issue PPO to each officer and the bank concerned. Officers will then know their entiltements and check that they are getting the dues correctly.

Some veterans living in Delhi may kindly check with the Army HQ the procedure being adopted. The same can be communicated thru this Blog.

Best wishes.
Lt Gen Harbhajan Singh

Dear General Harbhajan,
Thanks. I checked with IOB (my bankers) and really what they have is copy of the 95 paged Pension Table. In fact I helped the Pension clerk to interpret and cross check the the amounts from the table. The bank has the original PPO copy which indicates the Pension, Commutation and number of years of service. The current PPO's as you have indicated would be the correct one. This is required to be updated periodically by CDA Pensions and issued to bankers. What I believe now, is that Pensions are outsourced to the bankers for implementation. Each bank has a software that works out all the arrears as on Sep 2008 once the basic pay as on 01 Jan 2006 and number of years service is fed as input. I am yet to get the print out of my arrears as a bank statement. I need to get the latest PPO from CDA.

I think the MOD needs to do a lot more to set right the chaos created by the banks. I am amazed by the callous way the Pensions of ESM are treated. We need to get to know who is really responsible for this state, the CDA, MOD or the Bankers. To me it appears like it is chugging the typical bureaucracy roller coaster. However the flip side is that the arrears have been credited and Pension enhanced by approx 35% in my case. Certainly we will post all details regarding Pension in the blog as and when we get inputs.

Regards and best wishes,
Lt Col James Kanagaraj

Ex Servicemen are invited to send in their observations/ suggestions for effective mechanism to ensure that Pension Arrears and Fixation of Pension and ultimate credit in their accounts. The issues related to PBOR is more complex especially for pre- 1996 retirees. In the absence of date of birth, grade or rank equivalent (some grades merged) the correct fixation is held up in many cases. However banks are cooperative in that arrears and fixation of Pension is effected temporarily. We like to hear more from you.......

Army called in to Manage Load Dispatches to Petrol Pumps

Oil PSUs & Truck Strike :9Jan09 - Part1

Army was called in to manage loading and dispatches to petrol pumps
as the Government ordered arrests and dismissals of officers keeping off work. The move cracked the Oil Sector Officers Association, with Bharat Petroleum, the second largest retailer, walking out of the agitation instantly.

Oil PSU execs call off strike following Govt's tough stance

Truckers' strike: States cooperation must, says Chidambaram
Press Trust of India / New Delhi January 09, 2009, 17:30 IST
The Centre today said it is in talks with states to resolve the five-day-old truckers' strike, which along with the PSU oil officers' stir, has affected movement of goods across the country. "The road transport secretary has said we are talking to the states. We will have to take the states with us," Home Minister P Chidambaram told reporters after a meeting of the Cabinet, which reviewed the situation arising out of the strike.

He said the Centre needs to take consent of states since most of the issues raised by the truckers relate to them. The truckers have been demanding putting diesel in the declared goods category, leading to a cut in fuel price, unrestricted import of tyres, a single national permit and reduction in toll taxes, among others. "The issue of service tax exemption has been resolved. The other issue of increase in toll is factually incorrect," he said.

"All other demands pertain to the states. Yet, the truckers go on strike that is against the interest of the people and therefore, steps are being taken by the Ministry of Surface Transport to deal with the matter," Chidambaram added.
Truckers' strike: States cooperation must, says Chidambaram

Comment: One billion citizens held to ransom. The reasons outlined by the media for the strike seems so frivolous compared to the sufferings inflicted on the poor and needy. Shortages and Spiralling prices have hit the common man. Are Politicians and Bureaucrats responsible for governance? The Armed Forces are used like ping pongs to shore up the corrupt bureaucrats who take no responsiblity at any hour of National Crisis. Not a single bureaucrat held responsible for the lost lives or sufferings of the millions of citizens.

Satyam Collapse and Terror Strike Scare of IT Companies

By siliconindia news bureau
Monday,05 January 2009, 14:28 hrs IST
Bangalore: The corporates have become the next target of terrorism with six prominent IT companies in the city receiving mail threats, including Wipro and Infosys. The terror mail has threatened to blow up the premises of the companies.

The mail has induced a definite alarm among the firms who immediately informed the police about the e-mails. "The companies have informed the police two days ago about the e-mail and investigations are on," said Joint commissioner of Police B Gopal Hosur, without revealing any further details.

The terror threat may cause more alarm among the firms, as earlier the city's private security firms warned about the in adequate facilities available to deal with terror, at a time when the Karnataka government had suggested the firms to arrange for their own security.

Such threats on the companies have been witnessed earlier too. It was in January 2007 that security personnel had arrested a suspected Lashkar-e-Tayiba (LeT) terrorist in a village near the city of Bangalore and recovered a huge cache of arms and ammunition from their possession. More significantly, they had found a map of Bangalore and several other strategic locations including the airport, Wipro and an Infosys facility for likely target. Moreover, terror strike on the Indian multinationals or Indian companies will not only affect service operation in India but will also have impact on the business of other countries as well. It can affect business operations directly as well as indirectly, as cities like Bangalore, Hyderabad, Pune and Mumbai are off late home to several foreign companies particularly in its IT zone.
Wipro, Infosys threatened to be blown up
Question: Can the companies have trained armed guards to combat terrorists? No private security guards at present are armed with weapons and especially trained for this purpose. Therefore the only option is to requisition Police Force or CISF who are already burdened with outstretched commitments. The Private Companies are faced with dual problem; apathy from the Government and Terror Scare. Surely now that Satyam has come as a Shocker, further scare of IT companies being struck by Terrorists will surely have a cascading effect of collapse of the harbingers of economic prosperity. Only solution that lays ahead is to have specially pooled Ex Servicemen who are already experts in the field to protect the Private Companies and Installations. Of course, this entails investment and expenditure (weapons, ammunition, protective gear, closed circuit TV monitoring) and wages commensurate with risk to life. Surely it is a costly business but certainly it is a measure to thwart the designs of the Terrorists.

IESM: Fast for Justice Rally twenty fourth day

Photo by Brig Lakshman Singh
Date: Friday, 9 January, 2009, 10:15 PM
Dear Colleagues,
The Punjab reinforcement under Col Bhag Singh of the IESL has taken charge of the battlefront. They have arrived in such large strength that we had to erect another shelter and arrange additional logistics. Bravo! They will remain entrenched for the next few days.

The ESM from Baraich (UP) plan to march to Delhi in large strength after 26 January 2009.

I would like to apologise and make amends for an earlier omission. I should have mentioned that the first ex Chief to become member of the IESM and send a donation of 5,000/- was Admiral Arun Prakash. He has been a very active supporter of the Movement, including with his powerful pen. Our gratitude to him.

Best regards,
Lt Gen (Emeritus) Raj Kadyan, PVSM, AVSM, VSM
Chairman IESM

Friday, January 9, 2009

Superpower India: Don’t just talk, act like one

The series of events after 26/11 (including the January 1 Guwahati bomb blasts) have left no one in any doubt about a few facts. Any naval specialist will agree that the manner in which the 10 terrorists attacked Mumbai, including the transit in the Indian fishing boat Kuber, could only be possible with the involvement of the ISI, the Pakistani Army and Navy.

Media reports indicate that about 70 per cent of my proposals made in various articles in this paper since May 2008 have been accepted by the government. I hope that they are implemented urgently, especially since the recent roller coaster — initial “vehement denial” followed by “yes, Kasav is Pakistani”), ISI leaflets given to Pakistan Army about dismembering India by 2020 — indicate that Pakistan does not have peace on its mind. Poonch firefighting indicates the shape of things to come from the “epicentre of terrorism”.

The manner in which the Pakistani military, hell-bent on destabilising and dismembering India, took over the decision-making process from President Asif Zardari and his nascent government to win public support for the discredited military and from the terrorists to “defend Pakistan” in case of war, has left no one in doubt that the Pakistan Army Chief, General Ashraf Parvez Kayani, is the decision-maker in that troubled land, with the Pakistani government acting as his spokesperson. Indeed, temperatures went up last month when Gen. Kayani said, “Pakistan will respond in minutes,” and things cooled down only when, on December 29, he said, “There is a need to de-escalate”.

Why did Gen. Kayani raise the war hysteria pitch to such levels, and why did the media report that the Pakistani Army had withdrawn some troops from the Afghan border? The answer may not be too difficult. Unlike India, the Pakistani military machine has been kept well oiled with the $10 billion in aid received in the last seven years. It is, indeed, amazing that Pakistan, despite being totally bankrupt, has managed a $8 billion IMF loan, asked for a $60 billion “grant” to boost its economy, is acquiring three German-type 214 submarines, co-producing 150 Chinese FC-17 light fighter jets, inducting 36 Chinese FC-20 (J-10) heavy fighter jets, three Chinese frigates, Swedish and Chinese AWACS, F-16 fighter jets, artillery and Brazilian SAMs.

There is no doubt in my mind that buoyed by the “success” of the 10-man terrorist strike on 26/11, and emboldened by the “civilised and diplomatic” response of the Indian government and international community (the US is planning to give Pakistan another $15 billion), the Pakistani military, ISI and various terrorist outfits would be planning more devastating attacks in the near future. These attacks could be from the sea, air or land, or a combination which would aim to saturate India’s response mechanism, cause maximum damage and pull us into the “failed state quagmire” of Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh.

So how does India prepare for this “doomsday” scenario. The answers are complex. The government has taken a few punitive steps by introducing the National Investigating Agency (NIA) and making the 1967 Act stiffer.
Vice-Admiral Arun Kumar Singh retired as Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Eastern Naval Command, Visakhapatnam
Read more: Superpower India: Don’t just talk, act like one By Arun Kumar Singh

IESM: Fast for Justice Rally Jantar Mantar

Dear Friends,

1. IESM Poster.

2. All ESM Organisations and individual ESM PAN India are requested to kindly get copies of the same printed/ Photocopy and distribute to as many people in India as possible. Motivate every one to join the Movement and strengthen it to get Justice for the Defence Forces Personnel. The scope of "Protest Fast For Justice at Jantar Mantar" has been enlarged from NCR to All India with effect from 27 Dec 2008. It is heartening to see the “Josh” amongst the ESM to volunteer to take part in the Fast. “Jathas” from neigbouring states have been joining the fast. The volunteers from southern states are also motivated to join the fast. Bangalore “Jatha” led by Col Rajan will be reaching Jantar Mantar on 16 Jan 09. Punjab, UP, Haryana, Himachal, Rajasthan have provided the groups in large numbers. We request all states and cities to volunteer to take part in Relay Fast for 24 hours with the group consisting minimum of eleven ESM led at least by one officer.

3. Let us create an Awakening of Veterans.

With Kind Regards,
Yours Sincerely,
Maj Gen (Retd) Satbir Singh, SM
Vice Chairman Indian ESM Movement

Script within poster if unreadable see text below
We stuck to the oath we took
when in service:
 The safety, honor, and welfare of our country come First – always and every time!
 The safety, honor, and welfare of the men we command come Next – always and every time!
 Our own ease, comfort, and safety come Last – always, every time!
• We never looked after our own ease and comforts when in service. This was the responsibility of the Supreme Commander, the President of India, which her government has not honored!
• The government has betrayed us!

Oil PSU Officers and Truckers dual strike immobilise citizens

Oil crisis worsens as pumps go dry; govt warns of action
NDTV Correspondent
Friday, January 09, 2009, (New Delhi)

Petrol pumps in many parts of the country went dry and more are expected to run out of stock by Friday as the indefinite strike by oil PSU officers entered the second day today. This provoked the government to ask company managements to sack close to 70 executives leading the stir. There are 32,000 fuel pumps in India out of which about 50% are out of stock.

  • In Delhi, half the pumps have run out of fuel.
  • In Mumbai too, more than 100 of the 250 pumps are dry.
  • The situation is little better in Kolkata with 30% pumps out of stock so far.
  • In Chennai, it's as bad as Delhi with half the city's pumps going dry.

    With jet fuel supply also hit, flights have been delayed. In Mumbai, over 70 flights were running behind schedule. The strike also had an impact on oil and gas production with four key refineries now running below capacity and their output is down by 30%. Mumbai went without gas after officers in ONGC stopped natural gas production off Mumbai shore. Delhi may also see a CNG crisis tomorrow.
    Oil crisis worsens as pumps go dry; govt warns of action
    Commodity prices may go up on transport strike
  • Terror: Army calls off Poonch operation after eight days

    Photos courtesy BSF
    Press Trust Of India
    Poonch, January 09, 2009

    The security forces late on Thursday night called off its operation against militants who were holed up in caves inside a dense jungle of Jammu and Kashmir's Bhati Dhar near the LoC for eight days and said the ultras may have slipped out.

    "The operation has been called off. The possibility of militants having escaped cannot be ruled out", said Defence Spokesman S N Acharya capping the futile search for the militants whom the security forces had engaged in a battle.

    The encounter, which has been going on since January 1, has claimed the lives of four militants and three security personnel including a Junior Commissioned Officer.

    Army calls off Poonch operation after eight days

    Intercepts available with the security forces suggested that there were about ten militants, some of them top commanders of Jaish-e-Mohammed, and Lashkar-e-Taiba. One wonders if they are the same outfit who carried out the Mumbai Mayhem? Certainly we ought to be trained to outsmart the Terror Outfits by superior tactics and technology!

    IESM: Debugging SCPC Pension Tables and tackling Banks compounding the chaos

    Dear Brig Chander,

    Thank you very much for the great efforts you are making to keep the movement running. We are grateful to all those who are working for the movement and assure them of our full support from Dehradun. We are also grateful to our veteran Maj Gen B.C.Khanduri, AVSM, Chief Minister Uttarakhand for raising the 'One Rank One Pension' issue at the 28th Central Sainik Board Meeting headed by the Defence Minister Shri A.K.Antony at Vigyan Bhavan New Delhi on 7th Jan 2009. I wish all our veterans who are occupying either Governors, Member of Parliaments, MLAs or are in such influential posts in central or state Govts should come out in open support to press the demand. It is not a big thing and Govt will have to yield.

    Problem is being faced by our pre 1.1.2006 veterans in getting their revised Pension fixed by the PDOs which too has been messed up and needs clarification to them. Any how, we have gone into the issue and tried to find the reasons which veterans must be facing at other stations as well. Those are linked here for the information of all concerned.

    With Regards,
    Brig K.G.Behl

    Dear All,
    Most of us would be facing this chaos at our banks. Hopefully the Service HQ would take up the case with the MOD for issue of clear cut instructions soon.
    Cdr Sharan Ahuja (Retd)
    Member Core Group IESM
    Visit Maj Navdeep's blog for clarification:
    URGENT for (1) Pre-06 pensioners getting a pension lower than their juniors & (2) Personnel who retired between 01-01-06 and 02-09-08

    Thursday, January 8, 2009

    IESM: Fast for Justice Rally Jantar Mantar, twenty third day

    Dear Colleagues,
    The Battlefront is under the charge of our ESM from Punjab today. The campaign is continuing with consistency. A lot of well meaning colleagues keep sending email advice on myriad points.
    Allow me to say:
    1. We are sharply aware of media’s waning interest in our campaign. This is only expected and we need not allow doubt to gnaw at our resolve. This is simply media fatigue and happens with every event.

    2. Those of us actively involved would like to assure that there is no disconnect with the PBOR; the whole ESM community is together. There is of course a communication problem with those who don’t work the computers. We have started getting material published in Hindi papers that have wide PBOR readership. (Articles have appeared in Navbharat Times, Dainik Jagran, Hari Bhoomi, Business Bhaskar, Vir Arjun etc).

    3. The campaign is at a pivotal moment and we are constantly reviewing the situation. It would be incorrect to assume that it has not mattered one whit with the government.

    4. Some ESM have recommended recourse to methods recently followed in Rajasthan. It is reiterated we wish to keep the campaign totally innocent of violence.

    5. The legal option is on the cards. The legwork has already started.

    All mails are welcome and are appreciated. However, since the problem and various implications are well known, advice in the form of crisp suggestions in short mails would be preferable. Some of us get nearly 150 emails daily. Even one day’s absence from the computer makes it impossible to catch up. I beseech your discretion in drafting mails. At times every message may not be responded to. No colleague should feel the addressee is being short with him.

    Best regards,
    Lt Gen (Emeritus) Raj Kadyan, PVSM, AVSM, VSM
    Chairman IESM

    PM commissions Ezhimala Naval Academy

    Photo Credit

    Ezhimala (PTI): Ezhimala Naval Academy, a project to conduct a host of training courses including research, will be inaugurated by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on January 8, Navy chief Admiral Sureesh Mehta said on Friday.

    "After deciding to set up a full-fledged naval academy at this site, we have come to a stage wherein we are ready to commence training at the academy and the Prime Minister will dedicate the academy to the nation on January 8," he told a press conference here.

    The over Rs 720 crore project, billed as Asia's largest is capable of accommodating 750 personnel and about 500 support staff to assist the day-to-day activities of academy.

    Flanked by the Arabian Sea, picturesque hills and inland waters, the Academy spread over a 2,452 acres, will be the only centre in India imparting four-year B Tech courses in Electronics and Communications, and Mechanical Engineering for all the newly inducted trainee officers.

    The syllabi and the curricula have been drafted keeping in mind the current technical advancements and the skill tests that will be required in handling the future acquisition of the Indian Navy, he said.

    "The academy would give a lot more thrust on intellectual works and will have a unique laboratory and plans to allow others to do research works here," Admiral Mehta said.

    The ongoing works of the project are scheduled to be completed by April end and the full-fledged courses will start in June next, he said.

    The entire training sessions, currently being held at Goa's 'INS Mandovi', would be subsequently shifted to the 'INS Zamorin' at Ezhimala, which is located in Kerala's Kannur district.
    PM to commission Ezhimala Naval Academy on Jan 8
    PM inaugural address:
    Prime Minister Inaugurates Indian Naval Academy

    Mumbai Mayhem: A Clear Command Structure

    'A Clear Command Structure'
    Fallout of 26/11: 'There must be no ambiguity or confusion about who is in-charge; who will have overall authority over the different forces; who will deploy the forces according to the needs of the situation; and who will be held accountable for the success of the operation'>>>>>
    P. Chidambaram

    36 days into this office, I am more convinced than ever before that we have to set for ourselves two goals:
  • First, to raise the level of preparedness to meet the increasingly sophisticated terrorist threats.
  • Second, to enhance the speed and decisiveness of the response to a terrorist threat or a terrorist attack.

    One of the first tasks that I undertook was to re-establish and empower the Multi Agency Centre created in 2001 to deal with all matters concerning intelligence pertaining to terrorism. As you are aware, beginning January 1, 2009, the Multi Agency Centre has begun to function on a 24x7 basis and is now legally obliged to share intelligence with all other agencies, including agencies of the Governments of the States and Union Territories.
    'A Clear Command Structure'
  • Mumbai Mayhem: Pakistan acknowledges suspect in Mumbai attacks is a Pakistani

    Caught between international and nationalistic pressures, the Islamabad government has been reluctant to confirm Pakistani ties to the terrorist attack in India.

    By Laura King
    January 8, 2009
    Reporting from Islamabad, Pakistan -- Breaking weeks of silence on a highly sensitive subject, Pakistani authorities acknowledged for the first time Wednesday that the lone surviving suspect in the Mumbai attacks is a Pakistani national.

    Authorities here have been extremely reluctant to formally acknowledge Pakistani links to the shooting rampage in India's commercial and entertainment hub, even though Indian officials had almost immediately identified the captured man, Ajmal Amir Kasab, as a Pakistani.
    Pakistan acknowledges suspect in Mumbai attacks is a Pakistani

    Eighth day and Poonch battle rages on
    8 Jan 2009, 1052 hrs IST, IANS

    JAMMU: The gunbattle between militants and security forces in a forested area of Jammu and Kashmir's mountainous Poonch district entered its eighth day on Thursday with soldiers continuing to fight weather and the tough terrain to eliminate the infiltrators.

    The shootout in the forests of Mendhar area of Poonch erupted last Thursday after the Indian Army laid siege to the Pati Tar peak in the middle of a forest following a tip-off about the presence of a group of hardcore militants there.

    Some top commanders of the Pakistan based Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) and Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) terror outfits are believed to be hiding there.
    Eighth day and Poonch battle rages on

    Defence Minister addresses the XXVIII meeting of the Kendriya Sainik Board

    The Defence Minister, Shri A. K. Antony with the Minister of State for Defence Shri M.M. Pallam Raju and the Chief Ministers of Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Uttarakhand and Delhi at the inaugural function of the 28 Meeting of Kendriya Sainik Board, in New Delhi on January 07, 2009.

    Concrete Welfare Measures or Policy Statements? Repetition of same goals!

  • The pension criterion for the grant of financial assistance under Raksha Mantri Discretionery Fund has now been removed and all ex-servicemen up to the rank of Hawaldar, or equivalents in Navy and Air Force have been made eligible.
  • It is our national responsibility to provide them ample and equal opportunities for re-employment and resettlement. This would enable them to continue leading a quality life - in thought and action.’
  • Shri Antony said ‘I once again strongly urge all State Governments, to make full use of the services of ex-servicemen for mutual benefit. More so, in the prevailing security scenario, in particular, their services must be optimally utilised in strengthening and upgrading the security apparatus.’
  • Synergy between the defence services and the private sector must be harnessed increasingly for the benefit of our society and the nation. He said the private sector must also do its utmost to help the society and the nation to promote the welfare and resettlement of the ex-servicemen.
  • Referring to the crucial role played by Kendriya Sainik Board in the resettlement of Ex-Servicemen Shri Antony said, though the Board has a widespread reach, unfortunately it has not been able to make full use of it in a planned and coordinated manner.
  • Ex-Servicemen Contributory Health Scheme for ex-servicemen, he said it is the endeavour of the Government to extend the health care to ex-servicemen in the remotest of areas. He made a suggestion that these polyclinics be set up alongside the Rajya and Zila Sainik Board offices, so that all facilities are available within the same complex. Shri Antony made an appeal to State Governments to provide necessary assistance in land acquisition and construction of polyclinics so that the scheme becomes fully operational at the earliest.
  • Kendriya Sainik Board has unanimously recommended 100 percent training facilities to the retiring armed forces personnel so as to facilitate their smooth transition from military active duty to civil employment.
    Several new welfare schemes for ex-servicemen announced
    Pallam Raju asks Sainik Boards, State Govts to give more jobs to ex-servicemen
    Comment: What are the concrete welfare measures enumerated by KSB's? How is collection and increasing Armed Forces Flag Day Fund going to improve the welfare of ESM?
  • IESM: Fast for Justice Rally Jantar Mantar- Twenty Second Day

    Dehradun Railway Station- Jun 1949 Going for First Term Break
    L to R - Bhandari, Bahri, Dovedy, Shamsher, Chhotu Gupta, Mahender Pratap, Harbhajan, Wanchoo, Indu Prakash, Kanwar, Bhagat Singh, Inderjit, Didar Sabhiki, Malhi

    Second from Right (Front Row)- Lt Gen Harbhajan Singh, 1 JSW, Former SO-in-C, Third from Right- Lt Gen Raj Kadyan, Chairman IESM, Second from Left- Maj Gen Satbir Singh, Vice Chairman IESM

    Lt Gen Raj Kadyan in the middle and others during 1st JSW Course visit to Jantar Mantar on 07 Jan 2009

    Dear Colleagues,
    As scheduled, officers of 1st JSW course visited the Jantar Mantar venue. They are carrying their years very well - none of them is looking older than when they retired. They appreciated the efforts, expressed solidarity and gave their blessings to those sitting on fast. They also became members of the IESM. Apart from individual contributions they as a Course gave Rs 20,000/- for the Movement. I express deep gratitude on everyone's behalf.

    The Movement continues to grow. We now have an Ex Army Chief Gen Ved Malik among our members. He contributed Rs 5,000/- Our gratitude and a hearty welcome to him; I am sure others would follow.

    Best regards,
    Lt Gen (Emeritus) Raj Kadyan, PVSM, AVSM, VSM
    Chairman IESM

    IESM Membership Application Form
    REGD NO: DR/GGN/179 (2008-09) (Registered under the Society Act)
    Bank and Membership Form

    Readers opinions: Orders on a separate pay panel fails to cheer forces
    Orders on a separate pay panel fails to cheer forces
    Sample Comment
    Meghna Tyagi, Noida says: This is crass to deal with Armed Forces in such a shabby way and it can happen in a corrupt & misruled country like India only. Armed forces are basically self respecting & upright and will never succumb to these dirty tricks being applied by Babus & Netas to demoralise them.
    [2 Jan, 2009 1434hrs IST]

    Satyam Scam: Corrupt Corporate Code: Political- Bureaucrat Nexus?

    Satyam Scandal Rocks Outsourcing...

    Shocker from Satyam
    Ramalinga Raju’s letter of admission came as a shocker to corporate India on Wednesday morning. Outgoing CEO of the IT major admitted fraud to the tune of Rs 40 billion and said that the balance sheets had been inflated for years. He admitted that Maytas deal was the last ditch effort to get value for the fictitious assets. The development is expected to have wide ranging impact and has sent ripples across Bombay Stock Exchange. The accounts of Satyam are expected to be sealed as the day progresses….

    India Inc goes into 'deep shock'
    CII President K. V. Kamath said there was a ‘need to immediately examine the loopholes in regulation, accounting, audit and governance that allowed such lapses to occur and address them with urgency’. He said corporate India must ‘reflect on ways to demonstrate its quality of governance and enhance the confidence of stakeholders.’
    Satyam scam: Mega corporate fraud
    India Inc goes into ‘deep shock’

    Wednesday, January 7, 2009

    Indian Army to increase intake from NCC

    The Vice President, Shri Mohd. Hamid Ansari addressing at the inauguration of the NCC Annual Republic Day Camp, organised by the Directorate General National Cadet Corps, in New Delhi on January 08, 2009.

    Monday, January 05, 2009 18:51 [IST]
    New Delhi: Facing an acute shortage of officers, the Indian Army is now considering increasing intake from the National Cadets Corps (NCC) into the Indian Military Academy at Dehradun, a senior official said Monday.

    NCC director general R.K. Karwal Tuesday said that the government could increase the intake of NCC cadets in IMA from 64 to 80. The IMA annually takes in upwards of 1,000 cadets in two batches.

    “Alarmed over the shortfall of officers, the government is also likely to hike the intake of NCC 'C' certificate holders into the Officers Training Academy (OTA), Chennai, from 79 to 100,” he said while addressing a conference ahead of the NCC Republic Day Camp. The OTA takes in 600 cadets every year.

    The army faces a shortage of around 11,200 officers.

    Karwal added that since 2007, the NCC is working on a scheme to raise the enrolment of cadets, a majority of whom would be girls. The NCC strength would also go up from the present 1.3 million to 1.5 million in five years, he added.

    Vice President Hamid Ansari will Jan 8 inaugurate the annual NCC Republic Day camp, in which 1,950 cadets from across the country will be participating. It will conclude with the Prime Minister's Rally Jan 29.

    Indian Army to increase intake from NCC
    Indian Army to increase intake from National Cadet Corps

    SCPC: The Military cannot march on empty stomachs

    It is the Army Jawan whether JCO, Lieutenant or Sargent or Major it is these young men who bear the brunt of the bullets and shrapnel of the enemy. It is not the Babus who fix their remuneration who know what the soldier undergoes up there.

    Every day and night the Soldier is on 24 hour alert not knowing when the next bullet will come from or from where. He does not know whether he will even live the next day to see his family. A job in the Army is a risky job and a most strenuous affair. The Jawan has to be responsible to himself as well as to his Team mates. With the responsibility comes the arduous work of carrying weapons and rations and munitions. And even as he carries them he always runs the risk of being shot at quite unexpectedly by ambushes. His physical exertions and stamina and quick reflexes alone are his best bet. Anticipation of danger ahead comes from experience of dealing with a stealthy hidden crouching enemy. At all times the soldier whether alone or in group exposes himself to danger of losing his life, his colleagues' as also being left barely alive in some remote area or field with no one even knowing his whereabouts. The harsh terrain of the North in Siachen and J&K with not a friendly soul in sight for miles as they trudge along with their heavy Equipment and chilly weather calls for some determination from the Soldier.

    The least we can do is to ensure that the Soldier's family is looked after well and his Pension and Pay are not a hindrance to his functioning. Let us bear the costs of maintaining the Soldier, let him know we do not grudge his Pay hikes or his Pension hikes....

    TV Subramanian
    05 Jan 2009
    This story has been read 1297 times.
    Full article click Link:

    IESM: Fast for Justice Rally at Jantar Mantar, twenty first day

    1st JSW: Passing out Parade- 08 Dec 1950, Gen KM Carippa taking the Salute

    Date: Tuesday, 6 January, 2009, 9:50 PM
    Dear Colleagues,

    The Jantar Mantar battlefront is held by ESM from Bawal area of Haryana.

    Ever since the struggle started in the form of first public rally on 27 April 2008, this region has always been very active in their support to the Movement. Today they are standing in for the Varanasi valiants who could not make it due to disruptions in train services.

    The 1st JSW course is being eagerly awaited Jan 07, 2009.

    Best regards,
    Lt Gen (Emeritus) Raj Kadyan, PVSM, AVSM, VSM
    Chairman IESM

    General Bajwa from Post War Regular Course IMA, 1946 commission writes...
    Dear Raj,
    You have amply shown the stuff soldiers are made of. Bravo! I applaud you. I am First Post War Regular Course IMA, 1946 commissioned. I am now in my 85th year and still fighting fit. Let me know in what way I can help. We must fight on till we get our due place in the firmament of our great nation.
    Warm good wishes,
    Maj Gen Kuldip Singh Bajwa (Retd)

    Demands of Ex- Servicemen
  • One Rank One Pension (OROP)
  • Resettlement till the age of sixty
  • Ex Servicemen Commission headed by ESM
  • Services representation on all committees pertaining to ESM welfare.
  • SCPC: The armed forces deserve a better pay packet.

    Missive: Confidential Letter

    The Central government’s plans to redress the grievances of the armed forces over the recommendations of the Sixth Central Pay Commission is welcome, though the attempt still seems to be unsatisfactory. The military leadership had refused to accept terms and conditions that the government had initially offered. Clearly the matter has become a contentious issue in civil-military relations. Considering that almost 40 per cent of central government employees comprise military personnel the pay hike has major financial implications for the exchequer.

    While the military has four core issues to be addressed, it is argued that the government has only focused on two. The government has placed around 12,000 Lt Colonels/ equivalent ranked officers in the air force and navy who have 15-20 years of service in Pay Band Four which entitles them to Rs 10,000 hike. But what creates confusion is the conditions laid down that only those officers on “combat jobs” and “ready to combat jobs” are entitled for the hike. These phrases are ambiguous and therefore open to interpretation. Also that officers on deputation to other departments would not be entitled to the salary hike, is a disincentive for them to serve outside their parent organisations. For instance, the National Security Guard and Assam Rifles are officered predominantly by the army whose personnel would then be reluctant to accept any deputation outside their service. Besides, around 2,000 officers of all three services go on deputation to organisations like the DRDO, R&AW, NCC, Defence Ministry and Ordnance Factory Board and they would lose Rs 13,000 by virtue of being in Pay Band Four. To that extent the government has only partially addressed the issue. However, it has met a major demand by restoring 70 per cent weightage in pension for serving soldiers, sailors and airmen or personnel below officer rank.

    But, the armed personnel are unhappy that the government has ignored two other equally important issues, namely, the tricky problem of grade-pay for military officers with their civil service counterparts which existed till the Fifth Pay Commission in 1997 and the status of three-star ranked Lieutenant Generals, who have been left out of the higher administrative grade. The government has decided to constitute a committee to look into the problem, which clearly suggests that it will be put on the back burner.
    The armed forces deserve a better pay packet.

    Mumbai Mayhem: Is there a way to tame Pakistan?

    photo courtesy: elphilthmoor

    It is nobody’s case to start a war with Pakistan and launch any kind of strikes against that country when this has all the portents of escalating into a larger conflagration. Yet India cannot baulk away from this possibility and let itself be bled indefinitely. In the event of a larger conflagration, India must be in a position to inflict crippling damage on Pakistan in the shortest possible timeframe, before world powers and the UN intervene to bring an end to the hostilities. Given the prevalent state of the IAF and the morale of the military, this may not be possible.

    India’s options are extremely limited. The US and Britain cannot put pressure on Pakistan beyond a point to end terrorism. Rushing to the UN Security Council just to seek a declaration on the Jamaat-ud Dawa as a terrorist outfit is an exercise in futility. The Lashkar-e-Taiyaba (LeT), too, is an outlawed terrorist outfit in Pakistan, but it is still operating. Given the long record of terrorist acts against India by groups aided and abetted by Pakistan (the ISI, the army and the government included), we should have at least demanded that Pakistan must be declared a terrorist state. Though the world knows that Pakistan is the fount of worldwide terrorism, it was not likely to be declared a terrorist state due to other compulsions. But India would have made a strong point and opened an avenue for another action.

    That action is to put Pakistan on notice for the annulment of treaties, and the first of these will be the Indus Water Treaty. The World Bank could have been informed in this regard.

    India should give Pakistan six months to stop terrorist attacks and dismantle the terrorism-related infrastructure in that country, failing which we will annul the Indus Water Treaty. Simultaneously, start a survey of the projects to divert the waters of the Chenab. This simple move can make Pakistan realise that some of its canals will go dry. A threat to convert dams on the rivers Chenab and Jehlum from the “run of the river” to a “storage reservoirs” should be conveyed to Pakistan. This should be done in a manner to appear that India means business.
    Lt Gen Harwant singh (Retd)
    There’s a way to tame Pakistan. Rushing to the UN will not do
    LeT’s admission. Can Pakistan still deny its involvement?
    Pressure enough?
    Singh wants international pressure to persuade Islamabad to dismantle what it says are terrorist training camps on Pakistani territory and extradite 40 suspects.

    "The terrorist attack in Mumbai in November last year was carried out by a Pakistan-based outfit, the Lashkar-e-Taiba.

    "There is enough evidence to show that, given the sophistication and military precision of the attack, it must have had the support of some official agencies in Pakistan," Singh added.

    India has said it suspects that the Pakistan military spy agency, ISI, gave some support to the attack....Reuters
    Mail and Guardian online

    Tuesday, January 6, 2009

    Mumbai Mayhem: Pakistan Whipping Up War Hysteria

    The PM ups the ante and says, 'States that use terrorism as an instrument of foreign policy must be isolated and compelled to abandon such tactics... there is enough evidence to show that, given the sophistication and military precision of the attack it must have had the support of some official agencies in Pakistan...'
    A strong sense of nationhood is important to withstand both these types of threats. Our nation is clearly united in our determination to defeat both external as well as internal security challenges. Our determination and sense of nationhood derives from our inheritance of a great historical experience of a multi-ethnic, multi-religious, multi-caste and multi-lingual society. To-day, even as Pakistan engages in whipping up war hysteria, our nation remains steadfastly united and, if anything, the process of national consolidation is becoming stronger.
    'Whipping Up War Hysteria'
    Related articles:
    'More than 30 terror outfits operating in Pak'
    'FBI hands over 26/11 attacks evidence to Pak'
    Don't Enhance Pak's Army, Indo-American Group tells US

    Corruption is the greatest stumbling block to infrastructure development in India

    Corruption Knows No Ends...

    No state in India is free from corruption and the small list of projects all over the country which are riddled with corruption. The list covers some of the recent charge-sheets or recent revelations and not all states/projects are listed. In this sense the list is not comprehensive. Also, older cases are not listed. The corrupt deals listed here in any case are just the tip of the iceberg as no government-run project anywhere in India is squeaky clean, whether it’s infrastructure building, dispersal of aid or giving permissions for any works. And as the nexus between the politicians, the criminals and the police tends to cover up a lot of scams, the public will never really what is the real extent of the rot. This list just gives an idea of some of the corrupt projects in the country and reminds us why the infrastructure/health in our country is not up to the mark, despite money being earmarked for it.
    Nita J. Kulkarni
    Freelance Journalist and Writer
    Blog: A wide angle view of India
    Corruption is the greatest stumbling block to infrastructure development in India

    Window on Pakistan Press: 'Pak is reviewing dossiers'

    Window on Pakistan
    “The world is a dangerous place. Not because of the people who are evil; but because of the people who don't do anything about it.” Albert Einstein

    As United States Assistant Secretary of State Richard Boucher landed in Pakistan a short while ago on Monday, to discuss terrorism issues in the aftermath of the Mumbai attacks, the Pakistan foreign office announced it was "reviewing a dossier India handed over regarding the deadly Mumbai attacks".

    The announcement by Pakistan foreign office came quickly after India's External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee said in New Delhi that evidence regarding Pakistan's unpardonable crime has been handed over to the Pakistan High Commission. Urdu daily Jang and The News said quoting official spokesperson the material has been received in Pakistan now and is being examined by concerned authorities.

    The papers said Indian Foreign Secretary Shiv Shankar Menon told reporters in New Delhi that India has handed over evidence on the Mumbai attacks to Pakistan on Monday, and it expected a prompt investigation.

    On the other hand quoting diplomats The Nation said 'US is pressing upon Pakistan to act in the light of "evidences provided to Islamabad by the Indian authorities regarding the Mumbai attacks and involvement of Pakistan-based militant groups".
    Read more: Window on Pakistan Press: 'Pak is reviewing dossiers'

    IESM: Twentieth Day of Rally for Justice at Jantar Mantar

    Photo by Brig Lakshman Singh
    Dear Colleagues,

    Today the Punjab Brigade is manning the Jantar Mantar battle front. It has been a very exhilarating experience to share the floor space with Taran Taran
    toughies and exchange fauzi banter. Age may be showing on most of them but the fire of zeal burns bright in their eyes. Looking at their determined faces one feels reassured that we will achive our aim.

    They are all outstanding in their own way. But for record, we have two athletes of international fame from the sixties. Hav Bachan Singh of SIKH LI and Naik Hoshiar Singh of Bombay Sappers were long distance runners in the sixties.

    Bachan Singh is carrying memorablia of old photos and paper clips that he shows with great pride. Even without this faded and dog-eared documentation, his blazer pocket speaks for itself.

    An Hony Capt from Baraich (UP), Ved Pal from Bhiwani (Haryana) and Havildar Ahmatullah Khan from Kupwara (J&K) were among those who called to express support for the cause.

    Thank you all.
    Best regards,
    Lt Gen (Emeritus) Raj Kadyan, PVSM, AVSM, VSM
    Chairman IESM

    Demands of Ex Servicemen: The Headquarters IESM at Delhi is on Relay Hunger Fast with effect from 16 December 2008
    “Our demand for ‘One Rank, One Pension’ has long been pending. A Parliamentary Committee on Defence recommended grant of one-rank-one-pension in 2003, but it could not be implemented due to change of guard at the Centre. Even the Congress party, which heads the present coalition government at Centre, supported our demand in its manifesto. In 2002, Congress president Sonia Gandhi endorsed the demand speaking at a rally in Chandigarh and then President A.P.J Abdul Kalam also supported the demand while addressing both Houses of the Parliament. But it is distressing that the demand has now been rejected by the Government without giving any reason,” said IESM vice-chairman Major General (Retd.) Satbir Singh.
    Other major demands include constitution of an ex-Servicemen commission with necessary statutory powers and provision of giving them representation on all committees and lastly employment of Jawans till sixty years by absorbing them in Para Military Forces as recommended by the Sixth Central Pay Commission.
    The demand of ex-servicemen, Lt Gen Kadyan said, was not money, but a fight for "justice and equality." He said the present situation had caused "intra rank as well inter rank disparities" with personnel holding senior ranks getting lower pension than their juniors, who retired later.
    Eliminate discrimination
  • All Concessions including Military Service Pay (MSP)/ Pension to be with Retrospective with effect from 01 Jan 2006. Existing pensioners should also be entitled to get all benefits that accrue to pensioners who retire now. When all other government employees are getting their pay and pension arrears from 1.1.2006, to deny it to the defence personnel by recommending that the MSP be paid only prospectively is discriminatory. The arrears should be paid from 1.1.2006.
  • The contentious Sixth Pay Commission is silent about OROP and has in fact widened the disparities between ex-servicemen. A sepoy retiring on December 31, 2005, will draw Rs 4,667 per month throughout his life as pension. His compatriot retiring on January 1, 2006— the date from which the Sixth Pay commission comes into effect— will draw Rs 6,540 per month, a difference of 40 per cent.
  • Monday, January 5, 2009

    Antony inaugurates Army College of Medical Sciences

    Defence Minister Shri AK Antony inaugurated the Army College of Medical Sciences today at Delhi Cantt.

    The College started functioning from academic year 2008-09. It offers 4½ years MBBS for the award of Degree of Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, following one year compulsory internship. The college is affiliated to Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, Delhi and approved by Medical Council of India. The annual intake of the College is 100 students. ACMS and other affiliated colleges of AWES have unique character in that candidates are from all regions, religions, castes and classes. There is no quota of any kind and no reservation on any basis. Admission is purely on merit. The students passing out of the college will be joining the Army after successful completion of the course, subject to their suitability, merit and on the vacancies available.

    Chief of Army Staff mentioned that AWES is doing a yeoman service for the education of wards of Army personnel through educational institutions spread throughout the country and ensuring quality education at affordable cost.

    While inaugurating the Medical College, Honourable Raksha Mantri appreciated the excellent infrastructure and state of art building of ACMS and mentioned continued support of Government of India to the Army to open more educational institutions for their wards. He also lauded the efforts of Army Welfare Education Society for spreading literacy in the country.
    Defence Minister inaugurates Army College of Medical Sciences

    Why Lt Cols are screwed by the Pay Commissions?

    The question whether the Pay Commission has failed to provide adequate incentives to attract suitable candidates to join the Armed Forces is a difficult one to answer. Reportedly, the Armed Forces today suffer from lack of candidates for the Officer class.

    On Armed Forces
    There seems to be merit in the considerations the Armed Forces have put forward regarding the poor career prospects of even competent officers in the Armed Forces. These require to be addressed if the Armed Forces are to remain a source of strength and not a weakness for India.

    There may well be a case for examining the remuneration or promotion structure of the Armed Forces independent of the general services. There may be a case for a separate Pay Commission for Armed Forces, whose conditions of work are far different from those of civilians.

    The question whether the Pay Commission has been too liberal has been answered by the very fact that there have been a number of protests against these recommendations as not attractive enough. The total cost of implementation of the recommendations has been assessed at roughly Rs 12,561 crore for the year 2008-09.
    Recommendations of the Sixth Pay Commission — Fulfilling its mandate

    Why Lt Cols of Army and equivalent Ranks of Navy and Air Force screwed by Pay Commissions?
    The number of Officers of equivalent Rank of Lt Cols in the Military averages 18,000. Bureaucrats see this as a red herring for affecting economy. Effecting marginal pay increases for Lt Cols can substantially increase the Pay Scales of Officers up the ladder (Colonels and above). This is one rank which is heavily scrutinised by the Expenditure Secretary to ensure budgets are balanced without too much cash outflow. Another scheme adopted is introduction of Grade/ Rank Pay to further create anomalies and confusion in the Rank and Status structure.

    Though some damages caused by SCPC have been rectified by elevating the Lt Col rank from PB3 to PB4, but the missive regarding being in "Combat Role" for this pay scale applicability seems ludicrous. The anomalies created by the 5th Pay commission in respect of Lt Cols and Maj Gens is still not resolved in spite of clear directives by the the Court.

    The Ex- Servicemen are concerned because a large number of affected officers/ PBORS are getting relatively less pension because of the skewed pay fixation with the inherent anomalies.

    Lt Col James Kanagaraj (Retd)

    Judiciary asserts its primacy

    Legal Correspondent
    New Delhi: The just-concluded year witnessed a major stand-off between the judiciary and the executive over appointment of judges to the Supreme Court. In the end, the court collegium asserted its primacy, rejecting Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s request that three names it recommended for elevation be reconsidered.

    Following the court’s decision, President Pratibha Patil appointed Justices A.K. Ganguly, R.M. Lodha and H.L. Dattu Supreme Court judges.

    The Supreme Court upheld the appointment of Justice Ashok Kumar as judge of the Madras High Court, who was later shifted to the Andhra Pradesh High Court as permanent judge. It held that the Chief Justice of India (CJI) was not bound to consult other judges in the collegium while appointing an additional judge as permanent judge.

    To weed out corrupt elements in the subordinate judiciary, the CJI asked the Chief Justices of the High Courts to periodically review the performance of district judges, assess their character and integrity and, if found unsuitable, to compulsorily retire them.
    Read more: Judiciary asserts its primacy

    Comment: There is need for all ESM Organisations and Leagues to take recourse to Judicial Intervention with regard to redressal of ESM Grieviances especially the Pension Anomalies created by Bureaucrats. The large amounts of funds lying dormant in banks with ESM Leagues' must be judiciously utilised fighting for Justice through the legal framework. The Government's spate of SLP's used as delay tactics must be countered by employing reputed Lawyers to battle our ESM cases. Bureaucrats who cheat the Jawans need to be check- mated, exposed and made accountable through legal means!

    IESM: Nineteenth Day Fast for Justice Rally at Jantar Mantar

    Photo Credit: Brig Lakshman Singh
    Dear Colleagues,

    The Punjab team is holding the fort at Jantar Mantar today. Tomorrow, 05 Jan, the reinforcement from Varanasi will be arriving.

    One senior veteran who has been regular at the venue is Commander Pran Prashar (one of the Founder Members of Naval Aviation). Ever since the action started on 16 Dec 2008, he has missed only one day when his driver was absent (being over 80 years he is not allowed to drive). On behalf of the IESM I thank him for his indomitable spirit.

    The 1st JSW course is having the Course get-together 07 Jan 2009. They are all in their late Seventies. Gen Harbhajan Singh, who is one of them, has sent us very encouraging words and assuring us of their visit o Jantar Mantar.

    I have sent a reply welcoming their kind gesture of showing solidarity and bucking up the Movement. We will look forward to their coming.

    Best regards,
    Lt Gen (Emeritus) Raj Kadyan, PVSM, AVSM, VSM
    Chairman IESM

    No OROP for veterans?
    Supreme Court had passed a judgement in 1982 on the One Rank One Pension scheme for military veterans and the KP Singh Deo Committee had recommended the same unequivocally in 1984. It was also one of the main planks for protests by veterans earlier this year. However the defence minister has categorically stated its unacceptability in the Rajya Sabha.
    Government has not found acceptable the demand of Ex-Servicemen for one rank one pension. This information was given by Defence Minister Shri AK Antony in a written reply to Shri Kalraj Mishra in Rajya Sabha. The defence personnel have not rejected the recommendations of the Sixth Central Pay Commission, he added. [PIB]

    Demands of Ex- Servicemen
  • One Rank One Pension (OROP)
  • Resettlement till the age of sixty
  • Ex Servicemen Commission headed by ESM
  • Services representation on all committees pertaining to ESM welfare.

    All Political Parties Support the Primary Demand of Ex Servicemen
    Jaswant supports 'one rank one pension' principle for Defence forces
    Sonia calls for one-rank-one-pension

    Bureaucrats reject the Demand of Ex Servicemen as the demand was "not found acceptable" for administrative, financial, and legal reasons.
    Govt rejects 'one rank, one pension' demand of soldiers

    The reasons for denying OROP is untenable
    1. Adminstrative: Due to Red Tape Bureaucracy and inherent "Permit Raj" attitude.
    2. Financial: Additional expenditure averages 2% of annual Defence Budget. No grudge on this score from any quarter. (except for Bureaucrats)
    3. Legal: Till date all court rulings have been for enforcement of One Rank One Pension.
  • Sunday, January 4, 2009

    Smash terror hideouts wherever they are, says Kalam

    Sunday, January 04, 2009
    Former President A P J Abdul Kalam on Sunday advocated a three-pronged strategy to combat terror which included raiding and smashing militant hideouts both inside and outside the country.

    Firstly, a vigorous national campaign, involving every citizen, should be launched to tackle the terror menace, he said interacting with students here.

    Secondly, Kalam advocated carrying out raids to destroy terror hideouts both inside and outside the country.

    "Terror can be be eliminated by raiding and smashing militant hideouts both inside and outside the country," he said.

    Lastly, there was need for speedy trial of cases relating to terrorism to punish perpetrators of such crimes, he said.

    The "Missile Man" voiced concern over rising incidents of terror in the country which, he said, were posing a "big threat" to the country.

    The former President was answering questions, ranging from the terror scourge to his personal life, fielded by students representing several schools in Hamirpur in Himachal Pradesh.

    Later, addressing annual convocation of the National Institute of Technology, Hamirpur, Kalam emphasised the need to make NITs a partner in development of the country.

    © Copyright 2008 PTI. All rights reserved.
    Smash terror hideouts wherever they are, says Kalam

    Mumbai attacks an “act of war,” says Rushdie

    Hasan Suroor
    LONDON: Novelist Salman Rushdie, who grew up in what was then Bombay and insists on calling it by that name, has described the attacks on Mumbai as an “act of war.”

    “There is no question that this was Pakistan. You could see it as an act of war,” he told The Times on Saturday urging the West to be “tougher” on Islamabad.

    Accusing Pakistan of misleading the world into believing that it was fighting terror, he said: “It is trying to play both ends against the middle — to look like the friend of the revolutionaries, on the one hand, and a friend of the West in the fight against terrorism [on thes other]. It can’t be both things. This country [Britain] should make clear that as long as Pakistan harbours terrorists it’s not going to get any western aid.”
    Mumbai attacks an “act of war,” says Rushdie

    Separate pay panel for armed forces a farce

    2 Jan 2009, 0210 hrs IST, TNN
    CHANDIGARH: Terming the formation of a separate Pay Commission as an eyewash, defence personnel on Thursday came down heavily on the government. The proposed pay commission exclusively for the armed forces would be operational from the seventh pay commission, which is after 10 years. All the defence personnel are against the government move to make it operative after 10 years.

    City-based Air Marshal Randhir Singh (retd) said, nobody knows what would happen after 10 years. This announcement of the Centre is just an eyewash.

    Government should have implemented it from this time by reviewing the current recommendations, said Maj-Gen Satbir Singh (retd), who had taken up various issues of armed forces with the government. This is not the way armed forces should be treated and soldiers don’t want mercy, he rued.

    Terming it a political agenda of the central government keeping in view the coming parliamentary elections, Brig KK Kahlon said, It is a political stunt of the government. Politicians have started looking at us as a vote bank.

    Former JAG officer Col SK Aggarwal maintained, the government has not given us any relief. In fact, they have deferred our demand for another 10 years. He further maintained that the decision of the central government is not binding on the coming government and if they really wanted to do something for the forces, they should have reviewed the present recommendations.

    Lt Col SS Sohi of Indian ex-services league said, “We are still caught in a crossfire as the outcome of this decision would come after 10 years and nobody knows what would be the condition at that time. It has to be time-bound for six months or a year so that it can be beneficial to all in true spirit.”

    The defence personnel are not happy with nothing being done with regard to their demand for one rank one pension (OROP), which is creating a lot of disparity among them.

    It is pertinent to mention here that the union government has agreed that in future, pay revision of the armed forces should be delinked from that of civilians. A separate board or commission would be set up for pay revision of the armed forces.
    Separate pay panel for armed forces a farce
    Order on a separate pay panel fails to cheer forces
    No more deputations for Lt Col rank officers
    Army veterans unhappy with pay panel report

    Armed forces feel let down by PM's pay commission missive

    It was meant to be a New Year's gift to the armed forces and will be welcomed by nearly 12,000 officers of the rank of Lt Colonel and equivalent who will earn over Rs 8000 per month by being placed in a higher Pay Band 4.

    But the January 1 letter from Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's office to the Ministry of Defence, a copy of which India Today was able to access, could raise more issues than it resolves.

    For starters, all deputations have been immediately disincentivised. Over 2000 officers of the rank of Lt Colonel / Commander and Wing Commander go on deputation to the National Security Guards, DRDO, Assam Rifles, R&AW, IB, Ministry of Defence and Ordnance Factory Boards. They now stand to lose nearly Rs 13,000 in PB4 benefits when they move on deputation.

    The PM's letter effectively places another contentious issue of parity with the civilian establishment on a back-burner by recommending the setting up of yet another high-powered committee. The pay commission has already seen two high-powered committees – the committee of secretaries headed by the cabinet secretary and the Group of Ministers headed by Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee and including (then) Finance Minister P Chidambaram and Defence Minister A.K. Antony. "How many more high powered committees are we going to see?" asks an exasperated army officer.

    The letter, instead speaks of an unrelated demand – a separate pay commission for the armed forces – raised even before the pay commission recommendation were submitted to the government earlier this year. The move for a separate pay commission effectively hives the military away from the civilian pay commission, but only in the year 2018 when the Seventh Central Pay Commission is convened.
    Read full aspects of pay commission missive:
    Armed forces feel let down by PM's pay commission missive
    Full text of the confidential letter

    IESM: Fast for Justice Rally Jantar Mantar 03 Jan 2009

    Photographs Courtesy Brig Lakshman Singh

    Dear Colleagues,

    Today we have had the Lucknow Brigade (Col Saxena, Col Kuldeep Singh and nine PBOR) holding the fort at Jantar Mantar. There were further supplemented by some stalwarts from Punjab. As a rare show of solidarity, Lt Gen Surjit Singh, Lt Gen Kulbir Singh, Lt Gen HBL Kapur and Lt Gen PD Bhargava visited the venue and became members of the IESM. In addition, Maj Gen RK Vadhera, Maj Gen Soorma, Brig Ravi Awasthy, Brig Raghu Sohal Col Vijay Sekhri, Col Partap singh were among the many veterans who visited the battle site. Also present were a large number of our Service families. These visits always have an electrifying effect on those sitting on fast on that cold pavement.

    Col DP Singh called up from Mumbai. He along and Brig Dharam Prakash will be organising a relay fast in Navi Mumbai from 15 to 17 Jan 2008. After that, they also wish to send a delegation to Jantar Mantar for taking their turn in the ongoing effort in the capital. They also wanted 50 membership forms for the IESM. Others might have similar requests. I am once again attaching a form with this mail. It can be downloaded and used.

    A delegation from Gujarat including Naval and Air Force ESM has similarly offered to participate in the Jantar Mantar fast. They are awaiting confirmation of their rail reservation to intimate their firm schedule.

    Chief Petty Officer Shivnarain called up from a village near Kanpur. Having read my comments/ views on OROP in Dainik Jagran newspaper he is enthusiastic about what the IESM is doing and wants to join in.

    It is the spirit exhibited by our colleagues from all over the country that assures us of our Victory in the fight for Justice.

    Best regards,
    Lt Gen (Emeritus) Raj Kadyan, PVSM, AVSM, VSM
    Chairman IESM

    Towards Improving Governance

    To: The Chairman IESM

    Dear Sir,

    1. I am attaching herewith a copy of the document which was emailed to the PM on the night of 22 Dec 08 well before closing of the last session of the Parliament. It was also released to the Press,(TOI and HT). This document is an open letter, the theme for which is defined by the subject heading itself. The letter was sent on behalf of Club-20. No response has been received from any quarter so far.

    2. This document is now sent to the IESM with the hope that its publication through its channels will also have wider circulation and additional impetus on the subject matter which also dwells on Morale of the Armed Forces.

    3. With regards and good wishes,

    I Jairath
    Gp Capt (Retd)
    Club 20
    Letter to PM: Towards Improving India and its Governance


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