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Friday, July 29, 2016

The language goes far!

The language of the resolution issued by the Ministry of Finance implementing the recommendations of the 7th Central Pay Commission contained an odd line.

Though I would not blame the Ministry for it since more than them the line reflects the quality of application of mind by the Seventh Pay Commission to the pay, allowances and expectations of the defence community, certain amount of circumspection is required by authorities while dealing with such subjects. Of course, I am talking of the not so happily worded statement that says that additional levels were being added to the defence pay matrix to maintain parity with the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs), meaning thereby that the defence services were being upgraded to CAPFs level proving that the Pay Commission had placed the former at a disadvantage compared to the latter.

Till some years ago, other organisations used to repeatedly request successive Pay Commissions and the Government to bridge the gap between their pay & allowances and those of the defence services, but for the first time, the defence services had it so bad that the Government of India had to step in and say that the pay would now have to be enhanced so as to address the anomalous situation recommended by the Pay Commission wherein the defence services were now at a disadvantage vis-a-vis the CAPFs. Unlike some others, I sincerely believe that all professions and services in India are equally important and nobody can claim to be better than the other, however a reading of the Pay Commission Report reflects that a strange projection had been put forth as if the defence services were being paid more than what they deserved.

Historically as far as commissioned officers are concerned, the pay was broadly linked with officers of the Indian Police Service (IPS). When a pay progression anomaly was noticed after implementation of the 5th Central Pay Commission, a High Level Committee duly recommended that Majors of the Army in their 14th year of service should retain a near-parity with IPS officers with 14 years of service, and the enhanced pay was then implemented by issuing a Government order.  

Fast forward 2016, the Pay Commission gave IPS officers with 14 years of service (including training) an edge in pay even over Brigadiers with about 28 years of service!

While the Government may have rectified certain anomalies and may also not have accepted certain regressive recommendations of the Seventh Pay Commission, it would be in the fitness of things for the political executive to at least ensure that decisions concerning the defence services are taken after due representation of all stakeholders and not based on one-sided inputs at the back of those who are directly affected. It would also be appreciated in case subtle aspects such as the language of notifications and letters are duly given adequate thought so as to avoid unnecessary controversy. Though the usage of language and choice of words may not matter to an officer drafting a resolution, it can really damage the self-respect of those who look towards the Government for taking care of their interests while they serve the society to the best of their ability in trying and exacting circumstances.

A little sensitivity, hence, wouldn’t hurt.


Unknown said...

Realities as of today - and tomorrow. This being it, why should anyone be surprised to find the army short by 10000 officers. Nothing surprising at all. What would be surprising is for a guy capable to making it to CAPF as well as the army to opt for the army!

sesh said...

I am very glad that you have brought out the anomaly in a neat and crisp manner. I wonder, if the people at the decision making level take note of such issues and make comprehensive corrections.

Anil said...


B P Singh Maidh said...

Dear All,

It appears that home work done by CAPF was much better than those by Armed Forces/Defence Services.In addition work done by CAPF is visible , and they(CAPF) are deployed in public dealing, this gives CAPF edge over Armed Forces/Defence Services due to political requirement of Govt of the day.
As said by our last prime minister , no body can stop idea whose time has come , it appears that time has come for better days for CAPF.
Best of luck for both forces.

Unknown said...

Thanks for putting facts in right perspective.
Q? Historically were armed forces at par with IPS?
As known army officers discharged functions of both at dist, div and provincial level. At dist capt as police head and Maj/ Lt col as DM.
Only at central governance the ICS and Generals were there. Regent and Agent?
Q2 The capf is figment of colonial mindset where internal dissent could be subdued by force. As tool of politics we placed capf as substitute of Armed Forces.
Result? As policy we as nation accepted second rung recruit reach Brig/ dig level, whereas the first rung recruit were made to retire at Maj, then Lt col and idiotically enough now as col, with out any parrarel. Irony?
Q3? Where is defence of India. The defence, as policy, has to be pervasive and spread all functions of governance.

RAGHU said...

Major navdeepsingh is doing yeomen service with regard to service/pay/pension of def personal. He has interest and capacity both.

Col M Veluswami (Retd) said...

I feel that the broad banding of disability pension is applicable to all those who retired even before 01 Jan 2016. The restriction is they will get the enhanced rate from 01 Jan 2016. For the period from 01 Jan 1996 to 31 Dec 2015, they should seek legal remedy.

I hope and construe that "de-linking of 33 years of service" is also applicable for pre-2016 retirees who are in receipt of disability pension. In other words, their disability pension will not be reduced if they had less than 33 years of qualifying service for pension.

epeneth said...


I am ex recruit enrolled in the year 1979 and was discharged on medical grounds under category EEE FITS(NYD) in the year 1980 after serving 1 year 33 days, Sir is there any provision for disability pension the problem occurred when I came on leave, I was made fit and again the problem arose when I was on duty and discharged on medical grounds, Sir, is there any chances of getting pension. mine is NANA case.