Indefinite Hunger Strike Over One Rank One Pay (OROP)

Ex-Servicemen Go On An Indefinie Hunger Strike Over One Rank One Pay

Two of the ex-servicemen agitating at the Jantar Mantar here for over two months now over their demand for non-implementation of One Rank One Pension have gone on a fast unto death. A third Army veteran has now joined an indefinite hunger strike at Delhi’s Jantar Mantar.

Indefinite Hunger Strike Over One Rank One Pay (OROP)
Indefinite Hunger Strike Over One Rank One Pay (OROP)

Col Singh and Havildar Major Singh, who began their hunger strike on Monday, have said they were forced to escalate matters after Prime Minister Narendra Modi failed to announce OROP in his Independence Day speech on Saturday.

Col Anil Kaul (Retd), media advisor to the United Front of Ex-Servicemen Movement, said the agitation at Jantar Mantar here entered the 64th day on Monday.

The protesters have been on a relay hunger strike so far. Havildar Major had been on relay hunger strike since the agitation started.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in his Independence Day speech to the nation, had not given a date for implementing OROP, and only said that talks were in the final stages. His statement had upset the ex-servicemen, who vowed to step up their protest.

Close to 22 lakh ex-servicemen and over 600,000 war widows stand to be immediate beneficiaries of the scheme, which envisages a uniform pension for the defence personnel who retire in the same rank with the same length of service, irrespective of their date of retirement.

Soldiers retire at the age of 35, and officers from the age of 50, depending on their rank.

Currently, the pension for retired personnel is based on the Pay Commission recommendations of the time when he or she retired. So, a Major General who retired in 1996 draws a lower pension than a Lieutenant Colonel who retired after 1996.

Source: Telegraph

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