Mailboxes are full of angry mails by pensioners lamenting that the Supreme Court had rendered a judgement in the year 1986 directing the government to restore the commuted value of pension in 13 years rather than 15 years and that the govt had still not taken steps to implement the said judgement. Some have even suggested that contempt petitions should be filed in this regard and that the govt should be taken to task.
This is totally incorrect.
The judgement of the Supreme Court has been fully implemented and is being totally misinterpreted since it nowhere states that the commutation would take place in 13 years rather than 15 years.
The issue being addressed by the Supreme Court was that commuted pension was not being restored by the Central government and many State governments. With the intervention of the Apex Court the matter was resolved and the system of restoration of pension was introduced.
The govt however had sought to bring about a distinction between civil and defence pensioners which the Supreme Court disapproved and ordered that the rules applicable to civilian pensioners would be extended to defence pensioners too.
Thereafter, the Central Government fully implemented the judgement as a result of which full pensions are being restored.
The controversy of restoration at 13 years was brought into fore in the past too by ambiguously pressing into service the concept of weightage and parts of the pension regulations but the matter was again put to rest by a Division Bench of the Punjab & Haryana High Court in its judgement rendered in the year 2009 which can be downloaded by clicking here. The modalities of the issue have been again discussed fully and in detail in the ibid judgement.
To put it succinctly, the Supreme Court judgement in the Common Cause case of 1986 stands fully implemented by the government. Veterans are requested to kindly ignore mails, tables and unwieldy technical details floating around.
By floating imaginary amounts and the like, anger and frustration is being unnecessarily fanned which serves no purpose. Senior veterans should act responsibly before jumping the gun since this leads to a sense of hopelessness and despair even when it is not justified. This also provides a handle to anti-military elements to show the defence community in an imbalanced and unsteady light, which, most should agree, is a path less than desirable.
Please do not send me individual mails on the subject. Whatever needs to be stated, discussed or clarified may kindly be placed in the comments section of this post.