Pakistan Ex-servicemen Society (PESS) demands ‘one rank one pay’ scheme
Mandi Bahauddin – Punjab (November 13, 2012) – Ex-servicemen have appealed to the Army Chief and President Asif Ali Zardari for the implementation of ‘One Rank One Pay’ scheme with an immediate effect.
Under this scheme, if implemented, any personnel retiring at the same rank and putting in the same tenure of service will get the same pension irrespective of the year of retirement. The appeal was made in a meeting of about 60 retired soldiers that was held under arrangement of Pakistan Ex-Servicemen Society (PESS) Mandi Bahauddin here the other day. An old veteran Honorary Capt Amin said that gap between old retirees and new retirees of the same rank and service length had increased and the government had completely forgotten ex-servicemen and war veterans.
He said that whenever an increase in pension was made it was made only on current pension and commuted portion of pension was excluded which meant the increase was only made on half of the pension.
That was unjust because it deprived the ex-servicemen of their legitimate right, he added.
Amin said that although army was running many welfare projects under Fauji Foundation, Askari Bank and Army Welfare Trust for promotion of serving and ex-servicemen’s welfare yet it is regretful that benefits of these institutions do not reach to majority of ex-servicemen of low ranks. He regretted that army commanders had ignored retired soldiers as they never tried to establish any contact with ex-servicemen to know their problems while the local administration and police treated ex-soldiers as aliens and did not accommodate them. He said that whenever they visited the military hospitals; the attitude of medical staff was indifferent and facilities and medicines provided at dispensaries and health day centers run by Fauji Foundation were also substandard. The 91-year-old veteran said that this was not the way how people who have fought for Pakistan should have been treated.
Another ex-oldier said that ever since his return from army, he had been receiving a paltry amount of money every month that was consumed in buying necessities and nothing was left for him.
He said that he felt like cheated as the soldiers who have served their country and even before had been given little in return.
He said that he felt pity when he compared himself with civil pensioners of the same status and grade like patwaris, policemen and officials of the rank of tehsildars and police inspectors. The meeting resolved to send an appeal to the Supreme Commander of the armed forces for passing order to the departments concerned to implement ‘One Rank One Pay‘ scheme.
The ex-servicemen also urged the higher command of armed forces to initiate necessary steps to promote welfare of ex-servicemen so that they could lead respectful life. The ex-servicemen said that they would welcome their Supreme Commander on his visit to Mandi Bahauddin district on November 14 and expected that he would announce the establishment of District Armed Service Board, and Day Health Centre in Mandi Bahauddin.