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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The Raging Bulls of the Defence Ministry (Updated)

An Indian woman buried her grandfather in the black hills.
When she was young, he used to tell her that these hills belonged to her still.
And even though injustice took those hills away, ‘one day we’ll get them back’ he would say, and the ‘sun is going to shine that day’.
When we say right the wrong.
Before she laid him down to rest, she heard his voice in the wilderness,
Saying ‘I got 6 feet of them back’, and now we can right the wrong.

    -Prince, Right the Wrong, 1997 (From Chaos & Disorder)


The raging bulls of the Ministry of Defence strike again.

Read (and see) more about the treatment meted to our war-injured and disabled soldiers :-

It is crystal clear that while the higher echelons of the Ministry of Defence are sympathetic to the needs and requirements of veterans, it is the lower level appointments which twist and turn everything that may otherwise be going in favour of former service-members, and unfortunately the top brass tends to over-rely on such staff and cannot look through the game.

With a new Secretary Ex-Servicemen Welfare (ESW) at the helm who seems to be genuinely sensitive and is taking much more interest than his predecessor, let us hope for a better future. Though I would not like to sound pessimistic, but it’s nothing short of a mini-revolution that may ultimately be required to make the system accountable and to weed out the sadist elements from appointments at the cutting edge level. Be braced for tumultuous times ahead….


jinjon said...

The present Secretary DESW Mr. Samirendra Chatterjee, IAS was previously posted as Central PF Commissioner, EPFO till recently posted to DESW. During a short span of approx 1 year he has brought turnaround in the functioning of EPFO service delivery system. He is retiring in Aug 12 (Probably). We pray and hope that he will be able to remove a few shackles from present DESW functioning and render relief to Veteran community during his remaining few months tenure.

Abe said...

Ajai Shukla's opinion, Business Herald has commented that Capt Vijay Oberoi in 1965 who had one leg amputated and was declared with a disability of 70% continued to serve in the Indian Army and rose to become the Vice Chief of Army Staff. Wow Wow Wow.

Did he ever command a unit.

Was his name a qualification to be made a Lt General or am I missing something here. I guess the Oberois and Kapoors....... make it.

We have seen Officers with a suspected heart murmur are declared unfit to command a unit and hence denied promotion in the first Board to LtCol.

Definitely does not make any sense to me.

Anonymous said...

Apart from the sadistic pleasure, the lower appointments may also be getting cuts from the advocates being hired by the MOD. It, therefore, becomes a sustained source of income for the Babus. Food for thought!!!

Harry said...

Sorry to sound pessimistic BUT I honestly don't see much changing anytime soon till such time the 'systemic animosity and indifference' is sorted out by having AFs' officers posted in the DESW (and in the MoD as such) at various levels.

Capt Sharma said...

Opine that time has come to rein in this raging bull called DESW , which has become a law onto itself. It will be appropriate that in the first place, ex-servicemen's organisations send an united delegation to submit a comprehensive complaint to the President of India, seeking personal indulgence and with a prayer to bear upon government to restructure the manning and working of DESW with laid down departmental instructions with areas of responsibility and accountability well defined. So many strictures have been passed by the apex court, but it is left to imagination if any official in DESW has been ever reprimanded / cashiered. And if nothing materialsis within 6 months of submission of memorandum, then a grand rally by ex-servicemen be held in Delhi when Parliament is in winter session in Dec 2012.

Anonymous said...

I appreciate your good words for the higher rungs of bureaucracy but how is it possible for the lower rungs of Babus to take them for a high jump ! That means the higher echleons are either in cooperation or incompetent.

In either case, the consequences are bad.

Anonymous said...

The lower rung of the DESW are wilfully and deliberately doing this mischief in order to cause the maximum damage to the veterans.However, it would be naive to accept that the upper echelons of the DESW are ignorant of this plague within their system. I am more inclined to believe that this villainy can not be played out time over time without the knowldge and approval (a more appropriate word would be 'connaivance' ) of their top babus. Aftre all, the entire media is flooded with the news of such perfidy by the DESW. I am sure that the Raksha Mantri would be getting a feed-back on issues such as this which affects the veterans.In any case, that is a part of his job. Therefore, the crux of the issue is this : the lower level babus are not the only villains in this treacherous drama which is being played out ad ifinitum ; the top echelon, right from the RM downwards are equally culpable.
We can only be saved by the Supreme Court now!

Anonymous said...

May some one educate the readers on the procedure to be adopted for claiming Special Family Pension and documents needed for the same.
I understand SPF is entitled to a widow if death of a disability pensioner is caused /aggravated due to the disabilities for which he was in receipt of disability pension.
Have orders been issued for extending the benefit of broadbanding / rounding off disability percentages to pre 1-1-06 pensioners ?

Anonymous said...

The last part of ndtv link says that DESW is sending a letter to supreme court withdrawing 44 cases against veterans. Is it true?

Navdeep / Maj Navdeep Singh said...

@Anony at 7.30PM

Yes, it is true.
They have withdrawn some appeals on the 'service element' issue today.

Anonymous said...

hi all,
well, now that DESW is withdrawing some cases, we will all feel happy. What about punishment for those who are filing these cases for no rhyme and reason? what about thousands of other similar cases and delay and anguish caused to poor veterans?

Maj Narender Suraj Atri said...

Being a SS Officer and having not taken permanent commission after 5 years entitle me to service element apart from disability pension. On release I was placed in med cat A3(P) with 20% disability.

Anonymous said...

MOD withdraws:http://www.tribuneindia.com/2012/20120225/nation.htm#14
MoD withdraws appeals against grant of ‘service element’
Pension to pre-1973 disabled ex-servicemen

Anonymous said...

Dear Navdeep,
Is rounding of disability pension (attributable to Mil Service ) applicable to all ranks on Superannuation or only to those injured during war /CI Ops/Other Ops .