I have seen a slew of angry messages regarding non-issuance of the letter dispensing with the “33 Year” rule for earning full pension for defence pensioners. It may be recalled that the letter for civil pensioners was issued in April 2016 as informed by this post published on 07 April 2016. Further the reasons for further delay were enunciated by this post of 05 June 2016 but it seems that impatience takes the better of sane thought as a result of which venomous mails and messages are floated and even comments with unparliamentary language were left on this blog strangely as if it was the fault of the blog for the delay in issuance of the letter.
A little knowledge is dangerous they say.
While the orders for civilians were issued for the dispensation of the 33 year condition for full pension in April 2016, what most do not know is that a problem of interpretation arose soon thereafter even for civilian pensioners wherein it was not clear to various agencies whether the said dispensation would also apply to service element of disability pensioners. In other words, a question arose that would those in receipt of service element of disability pension also be allowed full pension, irrespective of length of service, that was earlier admissible only to those who had completed 33 years of service, or would the dispensation be allowed only to regular pensioners?. The problem was more extreme for defence pensioners since most of the affected pensioners with less than 33 years of service are not those who have retired with a service length between 15/20 and 33 years but those who are in receipt of disability pension and have been released with less than pensionable length of service.
It is now recently, this month to be precise, that a clarification has been issued by the Department of Pension & Pensioners’’ Welfare (DoPPW) after due sanction from the Ministry of Finance that the said rule shall apply to service element of disability pension also, thereby now clarifying the issue in toto.
Of course unlike the DoPPW, the Ministry of Defence would have to issue a letter with separate detailed tables because of the inherent difference in the system of calculation of pensions for ranks other than commissioned officers due to which protection clauses would have to be introduced.
More than officers who have taken pre-mature retirement, the fresh dispensation is expected to appreciably be of much benefit to other ranks released with a disability with less than pensionable length of service.
Readers are requested to be patient and not spread discontent amongst the military community. In any case, as informed earlier also, the arrears are to flow from 01 Jan 2006 and the delay hence hardly matters.