This is related to my post published on 26 September 2015 titled “Forwarded as Received”.
We are living in a free society, thankfully, and a democracy where freedom of expression is respected and also expected.
There may be differences of opinion on how things are taking shape in the military community, but then one must understand that various views can co-exist and differences of opinion should not be so shrill so as to override the right of a person to disagree or to have a different point of view. The email wars present a different picture though.
But what must be avoided is rumour-mongering to score points or even to prove a point.
An electronic message is now doing the rounds that Generals of the Army have been granted Non-Functional Upgradation (NFU) through a recent Government order, which has been refused to others. The message is supported by a copy of a communication which lists out 9 Lieutenant Generals of the Army who have been granted a higher grade based on the same.
This is totally incorrect and presents a skewed picture of the situation. While arguably there may have been instances in the past wherein the interests of juniors were not appreciated in proper light by the seniors, this is not one of them.
The 6th Central Pay Commission had recommended that Corps Commanders who were eligible but unable to pick up the Army Commander’s appointment (C-in-C) due to fortuitous lack of residual service of 2 years, should be granted the grade of the Army Commander on a non-functional basis. This was accepted by the Government and the orders were issued and notified vide Para 4 (a) (ii) of SAI 2/S/2008 way back on 11 Oct 2008.
The grant of non-functional grade/scale has hence been in force since the 6th Central Pay Commission vide orders issued in October 2008 and has no relationship with NFU granted to civilians and is not something that has been initiated by ‘Generals’. Obviously, it is applicable to the Air Force and Navy too.
It would be in the fitness of things if the focus remains on the right issues rather than getting into unwieldy subjects which are not based on the foundation of truth.
Let us be more responsible, and on a related subject, let us also learn to live with difference of opinion rather than casting aspersions on those who have a different viewpoint on the scheme of things during these churning times. Anyone who has a varied take today is declared as having joined the 'other side'. Is this the correct approach?