Saturday, January 15, 2011

ECHS reaching out to Veterans and Pension news

A very important input on ECHS is appended below.
Very small percentage of veterans are on email.
Kindly do your best to pass on this information to maximum number of veterans and their dependents.
Take a printout and place it on notice boards at all CSD canteens, community centres, officers clubs and other suitable places. Also keep passing the information on phone and by word of mouth.
In service of Indian Military Veterans
Chander Kamboj.
PS – The letter of of ECHS HQ below, has been typed by me from a JPG image. All care has been taken to avoid errors, however some minor error cannot be ruled out.

From: Cdr V Vaidyanathan
Sent: 14 January 2011 19:25
Subject: TAC - ECHS
A good news for all travelling veterans with in India. They need not take any TAC from the parent polyclinic. I am attaching the Central Org letter No B/49711/AG/ECHS dated 16 dec for your info. Please note that the order is valid for OLD as well as NEW Smart cards.
Cdr V Vaidyanathan IN (Retd)
OIC ECHS Polyclinic Chennai

Re: Circular 449
Dear Sir
As per GOI MOD Dept of ESW letter 17(4)/2008(1)/D(Pen/Pol) letter dated 21 May 2009 the Family pension of Lt Col and Equivalent is fixed as Rs 15420. As per the latest Circular 449 family pension for Lt Col and equivalent is fixed as 8760. Why this reduction and the justification for the same? The 60% of max pension of Lt Col is 15420 whereas 8760 is much less. This is a typographical error in the GOI MOD Dept of ESW letter 17(3)/2010/D(Pen/Pol) letter dated 15 Non 2010.
It is requested that the error be corrected on an urgent basis before the PDA act on the same and start recovery process.
R W Pathak
Cdr Ravindra Waman Pathak

Friday, January 14, 2011

Veteran welfare: Views and Responses

National Role For India's Veterans By Maj Gen S.G.Vombatkere (Retd)
Dear Fellow Veterans,
I am giving this Link click here, an article that may assist veterans to strategize. Please feel free to circulate it if you wish. Comments are welcome.
With regards and best wishes,
Sudhir Vombatkere
Maj Gen S.G.Vombatkere, VSM (Retd))

In response to post: Veteran welfare above politics- click here
Col Inderjit Singh has expressed his thoughts on 8 Jan 2011 on this blog. There is no need of a rejoinder to counter his ideas. It appears that he is in different frame of mind. He has alleged that IESM executives have political ambitions. He is wide off the mark. He is unable to see the writing on the wall.
If the IESM can address to various congress leaders to high-light woes of ex-servicemen, IESM can also address to the leaders of other polical parties to fulfill their aims. What is wrong in that? He also claims that he can settle the issue in one year if the IESM stops its activities. He is in some wonderland. IESM came only in 2008. The struggle for OROP has been going on since 1984. It is very well known that IESM is functioning very peacefully.It cannot cause any hindrance to any one.
We hope all the best and long life and God Speed for IESM.
Cdr Retd JK Sharma

Participation of War Wounded Foundation in Mumbai Marathon

Dear Chander,
I am forwarding a Press Release, which you may like to publish in your blog. Thanks.
Best wishes for the New Year.
Warm regards.
Vijay Oberoi
Former Vice Chief of Army Staff (VCOAS)
Former Director Centre for Land Warfare Studies (CLAWS)

The Mumbai Marathon 2011 is being held on Sunday 16 January 2011 at Mumbai. This is an annual event, in which participation is usually high.

For the first time, war disabled members of the War Wounded Foundation will be participating in the Marathon. The team of the War Wounded Foundation will be lead by their President, Lt Gen Vijay Oberoi (Age 70) and Vice President Maj Gen Ian Cardozo (Age 73), who are both senior citizens and are themselves war disabled. The rest of the team will consist of one JCO and seven jawans, all war disabled, with disabilities of various percentages and with one or more limb missing in most cases.

The participation by the members of the War Wounded Foundation is primarily for the ‘visibility’ of the Foundation and to highlight the work being done by the Foundation for the long term rehabilitation of all war disabled personnel of the Army, Navy and Air Force. Another aim is to highlight the lack of interest the government takes in assisting the war disabled personnel to lead a dignified and financially secure life.

Any encouragement to the war disabled personnel would be appreciated. You are requested to give wide publicity to this first time participation of the war disabled personnel in this important event.
Thank you and Jai Hind.
Lt Gen Vijay Oberoi
click here to visit webpage

Corrupt bureaucrats are like sleeper cells

Corrupt bureaucrats are like sleeper cells, dangerous by Abhay Vaidya | Monday, December 27, 2010 DNA India
Pakistan has been ruined by the army and India by the bureaucracy”. So wrote a letter writer while responding to a 2009 Asian survey that ranked Singapore as the country with the best bureaucracy and India, the worst. Have corrupt bureaucrats done more harm to our nation than corrupt politicians?

The various governments that have ruled India have been punished, tolerated or rewarded by the people through the ballot box. Such is the power of the vote that even the most powerful of politicians can be punished, as happened with none less than Indira Gandhi and Rajiv.

Chastened in defeat, top politicians characteristically speak of “accepting the people’s verdict”. They resolve to introspect, rebuild and reconstruct. Have you seen this happen with IAS bureaucrats and their associations?

The lobby of corrupt bureaucrats lies virtually untouched; like a computer virus deeply embedded in the system, which we know is infected but cannot be repaired.

The Bombay high court raised this very point last week while hearing a petition on the Adarsh Co-operative Housing Society scam in Mumbai. Pointing out that the bureaucrats who cleared key files in the revenue and urban development departments were gifted flats in Adarsh Society; the court asked why no action was being taken against these officers.

Using precise words, the court described the scam “as a clear-cut case of manipulation” by the bureaucrats. Precisely, manipulation of the laws, rules and regulations by the faceless bureaucrat is what is at the root of some of the biggest corrupt deals in India.

Thus, whether it is the Rs1.76 lakh crore 2G spectrum scam, the Commonwealth Games or any of the land-related frauds that have plagued the country decade after decade, itis often the corrupt bureaucrat from the celebrated IAS cadre who has facilitated the corruption.

Bureaucrats who try to clean up the system at their level and stand up to the politicians are cannibalised by their own cadre, as happened with Arun Bhatia who was transferred 26 times in his career of 30 years. After one such transfer from the Pune Municipal Corporation in 1999, which was effectively challenged through a writ petition in the Bombay high court, the chief justice described the transfer as “outrageous”. He said, “We wish to emphasise that during the present days when, unfortunately, corruption and dishonesty are at their peak, honesty and action as per law deserve a pat, rather than punishment. The transfer of Bhatia, in our view, is in the nature of punishment”.

We curse the Indian bureaucracy because of the gross inefficiencies at the grassroots. Our attack is misplaced because we need to focus on the corrupt in the IAS, to start with. Deal firmly with the top and the rest will clean up itself.

The politician is afraid of the masses because they can destroy him through their votes. The corrupt bureaucrat is virtually fearless because he stands protected by his political masters and peers.

He is the bigger traitor of the two and India needs effective mechanisms to bring him to book.

If one were to give a harsh analogy between corruption and terrorism, the corrupt politician is the terrorist who is the face of the act and the corrupt bureaucrats are the sleeper cells who provide him the support. They are the more insidious of the two because they are cowardly, lie undetected and having once tasted blood, are ready for the next operation.
Corrupt bureaucrats are like sleeper cells, dangerous

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Mercury Golf Tournament

Golfers of Corps of Signals residing at Delhi/NCR are cordially invited to participate in the Mercury Golf Tournament 2011. The Tournament is being organized at AEPTA, Dhaula Kuan on 19 Jan 2010.
Below 65 Years *Tee off 0630h onwards from Tee No 1 and 10 simultaneously.
Above 65 Years & Ladies* Tee off 0930h onwards from Tee No 1.
Ladies Putting 1200h onwards at Practice Green.
Lunch 1345h onwards.
*Tee-Off time is subjected to change depending on Weather conditions.
Golfers are requested to report min 15 minutes prior to Tee-Off time.
Golfers desirous of participating in the tournament are requested to register by 05 Jan 2011 email at Golfers are requested to intimate the following during registration:
(a) Rank, Name and Decorations.
(b) Handicap
(c) Preference of four ball, if any.
(d) Preference of Tee-Off time.
(e) Contact telephone number.
For any other information and assistance please contact OIC Mercury Golf, 21 Signal Group at 011-25765913, 9910387519 or mercurygolf(at)

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Army commander is the ultimate custodian of all military lands in his command

My Dear Chander,
I have been reading Gen Suman's articles with great interest and find myself in agreement with his views. However it is not so in the case of Sukhna and Adarsh scams. Refer: Scams & the Army: Silence is not golden by Major General Mrinal Suman, AVSM, VSM, PhD- click here

May be his information is different than what I have come to know. His piece needs to be read along with my article, 'Malfeasance in the Military' which appeared in the Tribune. I have always maintained that commanders, from unit upwards must, like the Caeser's wife, be above suspecion.

Sukhna Case
The proposer of this school (girls school!) had earlier asked for an NOC to build a Resort. Army had declined to issue an NOC. On arrival of a new corps commander he changed tack and now wanted an NOC to build a school. (He is no educationist!) Now there is a law that no construction can be allowed within 1000 yards of the perimeter of a cantonment. This law is in the interest of the army. Surely the army cannot be a party to compromise the very law meant to safeguard its interests. It does not matter, for what purpose the building is.

We learn that the brochure of the so called school had the picture of the then MS showing him as the future director of the school. Further he had shown the school as an affiliate of Myo College at Ajmer. Which was totally false. This itself should give us an idea as to the type of person this Aggarwal is. This officer (MS) during his second tenure at IMTRAT in Bhutan (now as the commandant) rebuild the officers mess and this very Aggarwal was the contractor, who did the work. He (MS) was also the Colonel of Kumaon Regt (at Ranikhet) where two projects were under construction. One of War Memorial (Rs 1.5 crore) and the other to rebuild the museum. Kumaon Regt already had a first rate museum. One of the contractor was Aggarwal, not the same Aggarwal, but could be a relative or just a co-incidence! Do we see anything wrong in what happened at Sukhna!

Adarsh Case
The plot of land called, 'Khukhri Park' was handed over to the army in EXCHANGE for another piece of land taken from the army by the civil administration, some decades earlier. So this land was in possession of the army and belonged to it and there could be no two opinions on this point. While the DDE maintains the records of military lands and administers some part of these (perhaps other than Class A land) but the ownership remains with the military. Station, sub-area and area commanders are responsible to ensure that there is no encrouchment etc of this land. Army commander is the ultimate custodian of all military lands in his command. It would be wrong to assume that DDE could sell, barter or gift away or return this piece of land back to the civil or for that matter any piece of cantonment land (not even camping grounds which are 'stand alone' pieces of land far away from cantoments!) If that was not so, much of Delhi Cantt would have been lost by now. At Pune cantt, the then Defnce Minister, Shri Pawar wanted to grab some land but military put its foot down.

In the case of Khukhri Park, this land must have been handed back to the civil by the staff of DDE in FULL Connivance with those at Station, sub-area, area and command headquarters. DDE staff would have also done the necessary paper work to show the land as still belonging to the civil. Because as long as it was military land no private construction could come up on it. NOT even for Kargil Widows. There is absolutely no provision to hand over military/cantonment land to any civil society NOT EVEN KARGIL WIDOWS or WIDOWERS! It was a massive conspiracy! the subarea commander went to NDC and came back as area commander and stayed on to earn, AVSM and PVSM. Was also cleared for promotion to the rank of lt-gen without commanding a division. The only other case I know where a maj-gen was cleared for the rank of lt-gen, was Military Secretary to the President. AHQ had initially said NO to the President and it is only when he forced the issue (I believe at the threat of resignation) that AHQ had relented.

Those who took a flat had to pay Rs 60 lakhs or so each. Now this is a tidy sum for an officer to muster. I also learn that this area commander was going around 'arranging' money for some senior officers! The DEO has a complete floor (may be four to six appartments, so figure out the ammount he had to pay!) Let us await the outcome of military inquiry and the CBI's efforts. Now a high court bench too has been asked to investigate the case.

I am of the firm view that much wrong was done at, both Sukhna and Mumbai and it is near impossible to justify the wrong doings in these two cases.
With regards,
Lt Gen Harwant Singh (Retd)
Former DCOAS
Present Status of Adarsh
CBI to file FIR in Adarsh scam; may name Ashok Chavan as accused
Adarsh scam: Action against Ramanand Tiwari


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