One Rank , One Pension ( OROP )

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As against 14 lakh serving military personnel , there are some 25 lakh retired military persons , in India , today

They are demanding , ” One Rank , One Pension ”

In simple terms :

>  Col Mhatre retired in 1985 , with last drawn salary of Rs 10,000 pm

>  Col Chari retired in 2000 , with last drawn salary of Rs 50,000 pm , and

>  Col Patel retired in 2015 , with last drawn salary of Rs 100,000 pm

They all served for 30 years at the time of retirement

As per present Pension Rules, by way of pension :

>  Col Mhatre may be getting Rs 2000 pm

>  Col Chari may be getting Rs 10,000 pm

>  Col Patel may be getting Rs 20,000 pm

Under OROP , all of them would  today , get Rs 20,000 pm  !

And as salaries keep climbing , with each passing year , they will all keep getting the same amount as pension, as the latest retiree in the same rank , who has put in same length of service , at the time of retirement

A kind of ” Indexation ” , aimed at neutralizing the ever-rising ” cost of living ” which is same for all three retirees !

And , the argument goes :

” Why not ?

Those who are serving , get their ” cost of living ” neutralized thru DA ( Dearness Allowance ) which automatically keeps rising every month , as CPI / WPI etc rise !

Why should early-retirees be made to suffer , for having been born earlier / served earlier ?  ”

One cannot find fault with such an argument !

But if OROP is implemented , the Governments ( Central + States ) must get ready with answers to the following :

>   Will this lead to similar demands from millions of retired para-military forces and Police personnel , in all the States  ?

>  Could this lead to similar demands from all retired Civil Servants , at the Centre as well as , in the States ?

>  Can this demand find an ” Echo ” in all retired Municipal / Panchayat employees , all over India  ?

>  Will private sector retired employees make similar demands on Corporate Employers  ?

After all , no retiree ( of any kind ) , can escape the ravaging effects of ever – rising inflation ( cost of living )  ! Be rest assured , they will all be justified in making similar demands  !

This raises following further questions :

>  Will this set in motion , a Vicious Circle ?

>  Will this make India , a ” High Cost Economy ”  ?

Only time will tell

But one thing is crystal clear

Each succeeding generation will be required to bear the burden of ensuring that its preceding generation manages to live a life of dignity , which could well run into Rs lakhs of Crores  !

I cannot escape comparing this potential scenario with the present Greek Tragedy , where almost all citizens ( whether serving in Government or in private companies ) ,

>  Retire at the age of 50

>  For the rest of their lives , draw a pension equal to 90 % of their last drawn salary !

I am not against OROP

I am for creating awareness of the issues and for starting a National Debate

hemen  parekh

09  July,  2015



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