Chief of the Army Staff, Gen. Manoj Mukund Naravane, Chief of Naval Staff, Admiral Karambir Singh and Chief of the Air Staff,
Air Chief Marshal R K S Bhadauria at a
programme organised to mark Armed Forces Veterans’ Day, in New Delhi on Tuesday. (PTI)
NEW DELHI :
THE Indian Army has proposed special pensions to be given to Emergency Commissioned and Short Service Commissioned officers who had fought in the 1965 and 1971 wars fought against Pakistan, Army chief General M M Naravane said on Tuesday. The Army chief was speaking at an event on Armed Forces Veterans Day.
“Some proposals have been sent to the Defence Ministry by Army Headquarters after due consideration which includes that the Emergency Commissioned and Short Service Commission officers who took part in 1965 and 1971 war, should be given pension-like ‘Swatantra Senani Samman Pension Scheme,’” he said. The Emergency and Short Service Commission officers do not get pensions as they served and retired much before completing pensionable service. The 1965 and 1971 wars were fought by the Indian Army and the other two services and to do away with the shortage of officers, a large number of emergency and short service commissioned officers were inducted.
The Army chief termed that veterans, ‘Veer Naris’ and their wards as an inseparable part of the Indian Army and assured veterans that the force will continue to make efforts towards their welfare. He said that the National War Memorial dedicated to the Armed Forces by the countrymen was a tribute to their sacrifices. Highlighting several works undertaken for the veterans last year, the Army Chief said, “Veteran, Veer Naris and your wards are an inseparable part of Army. Last year, several works were undertaken by organisations for Army Welfare. First of all -- second employment -- last year, our Army welfare placement organisation was successful in helping 240 officers, 11,500 JCOs and other ranks (ORs) in getting a job (after retirement). With this, they have also made a great initiative under which they help in getting Government jobs by providing 3-4 months coaching.”
The Army Chief further informed that a proposal has been sent to Defence Ministry under which 20 per cent more vacancies for JCOs for the honorary commission will be approved. Recalling that the year 2019 was dedicated as ‘Year of Next of Kin,’ the Army Chief said, “Under this, Army headquarters and formations did an excellent job. To further promote this work, the year 2020 too will be dedicated ‘Year of NOK’ as well because last year, the programmes which we initiated, all of them could not be completed. That is why I have decided that this year too will be ‘Year of NOK.’” Commenting on the role of women in the Army, General Naravane said, “We are getting women into corps military police. A total of 1700 will be inducted in corps military police. Training of 101 women has already been started from January 6 this year. They will be deployed in field formations upon completion of training.”
Wishing the veterans on the New Year, the Army Chief said, “I want to assure all veterans that Army will keep trying to make your welfare better. I wish you and your family on the New Year from all ranks of the Army. I pray that you remain healthy and keep working for the betterment of the country.” Speaking on the occasion, Navy Chief Admiral Karambir Singh recalled a “lesson” given to him by his flying instructor many decades ago. “He told me - ‘For a pilot, take off is optional, but my dear, landing is compulsory!’ I would say that for all of us, wearing the uniform was by choice - but retirement is inevitable - we will all be veterans one day. We should be cognisant of the responsibility for the veterans,” said the Navy Chief.