Parrikar to ex-servicemen: “good news” soon on OROP

RSTV Bureau
File Photo ( PTI )

File Photo ( PTI )

Union Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar claimed that the Central government is nearing a resolution in the emotive issue of ‘One Rank, One Pension’ (OROP). On Thursday, Union Minister Parrikar said that there will be “good news” soon on the issue of One Rank One Pension (OROP).

“It’s an inter-departmental issue. As far as the Defence Ministry is concerned, our work is almost over. This is taking time but I can say that there will be good news soon,” Manohar Parrikar said in Lucknow.

Demanding the implementation of OROP policy, several ex-servicemen have been holding protest against Narendra Modi-led Central government to fulfil the promise, which the BJP had made during 2014 polls campaign.

Manohar Parrikar, who was in Lucknow, to inaugurate an orientation programme for the newly elected Cantonment Board Members, also said the Defence Ministry will not be a hindrance in developmental projects.

“The ministry will not be creating hurdles in developmental projects. We have given land for developmental works wherever needed,” he said in reply to a question.

Since 14th June hundreds of ex-servicemen have participated in the protest showing their anger with the current government.

Some of the ex-servicemen had even sought President Pranab Mukherjee’s intervention on their behalf. The issue of OROP was raised by the BJP during the campaigning for 2014 general polls. The party had then promised to implement the policy soon after coming to the power. But the policy is yet to be implemented.

Earlier in his eighth installment of ‘Mann Ki Baat’ radio talk, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had assured ex-servicemen that his government would soon resolve the OROP issue.

The policy of OROP, if implemented, will enable a uniform pension for the defence personnel retiring in the same rank with the same length of service, irrespective of their date of retirement. Close to 22 lakh ex-servicemen and over six lakh war widows stand to be the immediate beneficiaries of the scheme, when implemented.

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.