Ex-servicemen front extends support to Congress

dehradun Updated: Feb 04, 2017 19:49 IST
Nihi Sharma
Nihi Sharma
Hindustan Times

Member of the Indian Ex-Servicemen Movement (IESM) Maj Gen (Retd) Satbir Singh addresses a press conference in Dehradun on Saturday. (Vinay Santosh Kumar/HT Photo)

After showing solidarity with Congress in Punjab, an organisation of retired armed personnel on Saturday extended its support to the Harish Rawat-led ruling party in Uttarakhand.

Disappointed with discrepancies in ‘One Rank, One Pension’ (OROP), the United Front of Ex-Servicemen of India, which also has widows of defence personnel among its members, extended its support to the Harish Rawat government in Uttarakhand too.

In the presence of Congress chief and party candidate from Sahaspur Kishore Upadhyay, the front declared to support the party which has promised better pensions for retired personnel and their families.

At a conference here, Maj Gen (retd) Satbeer Singh claimed how ex-servicemen were protesting at Jantar Mantar for last 601 days for their demand. “There are four main points showing discrepancies in the OROP notification issued by the Centre. The pensions aren’t provided as per recommendations of the Koshyari Committee. Revision of pensions will be done in five years and not after every two years. Low pensions to widows, no extension of the facility to reservists, discrepancies in disability pension and others,” Singh said.

In Uttarakhand, Congress has promised various sops, including a separate ministry and a minister for the retired defence personnel, hike in pensions to widows, filling up vacant posts and to effectively work for the welfare of personnel and their families.

Nayak Uday Singh Rawat, who hails from Chamoli, claimed BJP got 100 additional seats and formed the government in 2014 in Delhi after it garnered support of defence fraternity. “But, the OROP ‘lollipop’ given to us will prove disastrous for BJP in the poll-bound states. The front has already extended support to Congress in Punjab. It will be supporting Congress in all five poll-bound states,” Rawat said.

First Published: Feb 04, 2017 19:48 IST