A central move to give India’s governors pension when they demit office is shuttling between the government offices over who should pay for the pension.
The Centre wants the states to bear the burden for the pension but the states have out-rightly rejected the move.
The demand for pension to governors will come up over the next two days when 28 governors spend the next two days discussing varied topics from the fight against terrorism in the backdrop of Delhi's 'Black Saturday" to a more pro-active role for Raj Bhavans in administration of scheduled areas and tribals.
President Pratibha Devisingh Patil will sit through the two-day conference beginning Tuesday, kicking off the meet with her address that will nudge holders of the gubernatorial posts to use their position to influence state governments to improve the quality of life of the citizens.
There is, however, no word yet if the Centre would commit itself to taking care of them once they demit office.
“Most states have refused to pay for the pensions of governors, saying the Centre should pay since they were central appointees,” a senior government official said.
In face of similar resistance from the states, the Union home ministry had circulated a note within the government to seek consensus on a proposal that Delhi reimburse the states for the pension.
Last week home minister Shivraj Patil raised the proposal again when the Cabinet took a call on raising salaries for the President, Vice President and Governors. But there was no consensus.
An official said the demand also figured on Monday evening when governors, led by the senior-most governor, DN Sahay of Tripura, designated as the Doyen of Governors, informally met the President.
A Rashtrapati Bhavan spokesperson said issues of pensionary benefits and other terminal benefits to Governors will also be deliberated upon during the two-day conference.
Delhi's 'Black Saturday' will bring terrorism into focus at the conference but it is the presidential reminder to governors on their constitutional powers that can change lives of millions of tribals.