91-yr-old ex-railway employee awaits revision in pension
Madan Mohan Lal Sobti, 91, has been awaiting a revision of his pension since the past three decades. Since his retirement on August 31, 1981, as the deputy chief controller from Moradabad Division for Northern Railway, Sobiti has been living on a paltry pension of Rs8,000, which includes his dearness allowance, fixed according the government pay scales at the time of his retirement, despite three revisions in the scales since.
Three pay commissions-of 1987, 1994 and 2006-instituted since he retired have revised government pay scales. While a CAT judgment ordered the Fifth Pay Commission to bring the pre-1986 and post-1986 retirees under the complete parity and the Sixth Pay Commission to bring the pre-2006 and post-2006 retirees under the modified parity scheme, his pension remained unchanged despite 14 written requests to the railway department. Sobti has even written to the railway board chairman and successive railway ministers, only to come a cropper.
"Moradabad divisional railway manager have harassed me for the past four years. They say that my service record file is either lost or misplaced and is thus in not available," he said.
He added that no search memo was issued to settlement section to trace out the file nor was an FIR was lodged with the GRP Moradabad in this regard despite several applications demanding it since 1991.
"The pay grades and pensions have increased by manifolds by the pay commissions. I could live a dignified life and could even bear my medical expenses if my pension were revised," said Sobti, who currently lives with his son at Sunder Nagar, Rahon Road.
MS Gill, the president of the All Indian Railway Retirees Federation said the case highlights the Railways' apathy. "Sobti has been suffering from several chronic diseases and has been advised not to leave the city. The Railways has not forced him to fight for his rights," he said, demanding a solution to the problem soon.