Rank Pay forms a part of Basic Pay - Supreme Court

Discussion in 'Indian Army' started by Ray, Sep 20, 2012.

  1. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    Rank Pay forms a part of basic pay, release arrears to affected officers : Supreme Court, today, 04 September 2012

    Perhaps historically the most important litigation involving the military has culminated today.

    A three judge Bench of the Hon’ble Supreme Court today decided not to interfere with its earlier decision granting the cumulative benefits and arrears of Rank Pay with effect from 01-01-1986 to all affected officers. However, the interest component has been modified and interest @ 6% per annum would now be admissible on the arrears from 01-01-2006 rather than 01-01-1986.

    All payments have been directed to be made within a period of 12 weeks from today and the benefits shall be released to all officers irrespective of whether they had approached a judicial forum or not.

    As many would be aware, after the 4th Central Pay Commission (CPC), an integrated pay scale of Rs 2300-5100 was implemented for officers from the rank of 2/Lt to Brig. In addition, rank pay was authorised to officers from the rank of Capt to Brig ranging from Rs 200 to 1200 which was to be added into the basic pay for all intents and purposes.

    However, while fixing the pay in the new scales, an amount equal to the rank pay was deducted from the emoluments resulting in financial loss to all affected officers. Hence all officers holding the rank of Capt to Brig as on 01-01-1986 suffered cumulative losses.

    The Hon’ble Kerala High Court in a case filed by Maj AK Dhanapalan had termed illegal this deduction of rank pay. The SLP filed by the Union of India was also dismissed, albeit not on merits but on technical grounds of limitation.

    Soon thereafter, many similar petitions were filed in various Hon’ble High Courts all over the country which were clubbed together and transferred to the Hon’ble Supreme Court to be heard alongwith an SLP of similar nature which had arisen out of a case that was allowed on the basis of the judgement in Dhanapalan’s case.

    The Hon’ble Supreme Court on 08 March 2010 upheld the said verdict and granted relief to all similarly placed officers alongwith an interest of 6%.

    Things were however not to end there since the Govt constituted a committee to look into the amount involved and went back to the Hon’ble Supreme Court by filing an application for recall of the order dated 08 March 2010 on the grounds of burdening of the exchequer and also stating therein that many more issues on the subject were not taken into consideration by the Court and hence the order needed to be recalled.

    The case thereafter remained pending before the Hon’ble Supreme Court and was finally argued today when the Hon’ble Court, after hearing marathon arguments of the Solicitor General appearing for the govt, decided that there was no infirmity in the order passed on 08 March 2010. As informed above, only the modification in the grant of the interest component was effectuated.

    The case was not without surprising developments which can now be shared since the issue no longer remains sub judice.

    First was the total incorrect and skewed presentation of the status and pay of military officers vis-à-vis officers of the civil services projected in the affidavit appended with the recall application filed by the Union of India. The speciousness thereof has already been discussed by me on the blog in November 2011 and all those falsities were exposed in the affidavit filed on behalf of the affected officers before the Hon’ble Court.

    Secondly, which can be disclosed now, is that when it was being projected by the Govt that the Services HQ were also in favour of getting the verdict recalled / reversed, the three services on the basis of a decision taken at the apex level, clearly, officially and categorically informed the Solicitor General in writing that the Armed Forces were not in favour of the matter being contested against the affected officers and in fact were in favour of getting the verdict of the SC dated 08 March 2010 implemented. Thereafter, the Ministry of Defence wrote to the Services HQ asking them to withdraw the communication to the Solicitor General, however to the credit of the Services, the said communication was ultimately not withdrawn. Besides showing utter disregard for the opinion of the services in this matter, this incident also shows as to how the MoD tries to browbeat the services into accepting its views. Needless to state, in litigation, one party to a particular litigation can never direct another to take a particular stand. However this has been continuing unabated in the MoD wherein they force the Services to reflect the stand of the MoD before Courts and not project their (services’) independent views as is permissible under law. And unfortunately, it’s also seen that elements of the JAG Branch usually toe the line of the MoD rather than the Services.

    The biggest ‘Thank You’ for this win goes to Retired Defence Officers’ Association (RDOA) who had been unflinchingly following up the matter with great zeal in a very objective and balanced manner.

    Indian Military : Service Benefits and Issues
     
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  3. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    Incorrect letter regarding pay fixation of veterans in Banks and other financial institutions withdrawn by Ministry of Finance

    Based on the newly introduced concepts of 6th CPC, fresh instructions were issued by the Govt of India, Department of Personnel and Training vide Letter No 3/19/2009-Estt (Pay II) dated 05 April 2010 in which all modalities of pay fixation of re-employed ex-servicemen pensioners were explained. The said letter however was vague and ambiguous as far as the treatment of Military Service Pay (MSP) was concerned. As a result, civil organisations including banks, started deducting MSP from the pay fixed in the re-employed organisations, meaning thereby, that MSP was not being included in the protected pay in such organisations.

    Accordingly on the issue being raised by ex-servicemen, a clarification was sought from the Ministry of Finance and a fresh letter was thereafter issued by the DoPT of even number dated 08 November 2010 in which the following was explicitly clarified by the Govt of India :-


    “Hence in respect of all those defence officers/personnel, whose pension contains an element of MSP, that need not be deducted from the pay fixed on re-employment”


    The above clarification, wherein it was provided that MSP would not be deducted from the pay fixed on re-employment, was endorsed by the Govt of India, Ministry of Finance, Department of Financial Services, to all Banks etc for compliance vide Letter No 4/1/2010-SCT(B) dated 22 Nov 2010.

    However later, on receiving letters for clarification of the subject from The Indian Banks’ Association, the Department of Financial Services issued another letter No F No 4/1/2010-SCT(B) dated 23 March 2012 based on the earlier DoPT letter dated 08 Nov 2010 but in which it was surprisingly incorrectly stated in the last lines that MSP shall not be included in pay fixation, meaning thereby that MSP shall be deducted from the pay fixed on re-employment. This however was actually in contravention of the actual DoPT letter dated 08 Nov 2010 which in fact clearly states that MSP need not be deducted from pay fixed on re-employment. The following lines of the letter dated 23 March 2012 created chaos:-


    “Therefore Ex-servicemen re-employed in the banks who retired on/or after 01.01.2006 are eligible to pay fixation in banks based on the pay drawn by them at the time of discharge from the Defence Services which would include band pay Plus grade pay but does not include MSP”

    The said clarification dated 23 March 2012 signed by Mr LK Meena, Director of Financial Services, rather than clarifying the issue unnecessarily created confusion and banks thereafter started deducting MSP from the pay fixed on re-employment while the DoPT had stated just the opposite.

    When I pointed out the anomaly to the Department of Financial Services, no action was taken by them and even RTI Applications were stonewalled.

    However, it goes to the credit of Mr LK Meena, Director, Department of Financial Services, Ministry of Finance, Govt of India, that on my pointing out the fact that his staff had not briefed him correctly before getting the letter issued, he has promptly withdrawn the incorrect direction dated 23 March 2012 and has now directed all Banks and Insurance Companies to follow DoPT directions dated 08 Nov 2010 in letter and spirit. The letter withdrawing the earlier letter and containing the aforesaid directions has been issued on 28 Aug 2012. Mr Meena has also stated that his Public Information Officer had not replied to the RTI Application in a proper manner.

    With this, the problem of not taking into account the Grade Pay and MSP of defence personnel on re-employment in Banking and Insurance institutions stands resolved

    Indian Military : Service Benefits and Issues
     
  4. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    Lack of details in PM’s speech on military pay and pension anomalies

    For all those who are wondering why the Prime Minister only briefly touched the matter regarding implementation of the recommendations of the Committee of Secretaries examining pay and pension anomalies of the services and did not fully discuss the details in his Independence Day Speech, it would be worthwhile to inform that firstly the Committee could not submit the report by 08 August 2012 as envisaged by the order of the PMO and there still were some loose ends and some dissenting voices from the side of the Defence Ministry. And secondly, it has come to note that the implementation could not be officially announced because of the lack of a cabinet nod and hence the absence of the formal acceptance of the report by the govt. Mr Deshmukh’s untimely demise added to the delay.

    On implementation, which should be in the very near future, the military community can expect bridging of the gap between pre and post 2006 retirees by further enhancement of weightages for pension, enhancement of pension of commissioned officer retirees on the principles of modified parity, dual family pension for widows, removal of bar of continuance of family pension on marriage of handicapped kin, introduction of common pay-scales for ranks below commissioned officers and non-functional upgradation (NFU) for commissioned officers. Civilian pensioners can also be expected to be benefited as a result of modification of pensionary modalities.

    Enhancement of Grade Pay for commissioned ranks and enhanced initial pay fixation for Lt Cols, Cols and Brigs may not be recommended by the committee and would in all probability be kept pending for further deliberations.

    Still, there’s many-a-slip in the domain of officialdom, as we all know, hence reactions on the fresh provisions should be reserved till the time the recommendations are officially notified as accepted with full details.

    Indian Military : Service Benefits and Issues
     
  5. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    What can be legitimately expected? : PM appointed Committee of Secretaries looking into Pay and Pension anomalies

    It seems that the PM appointed Committee of Secretaries looking into the anomalies affecting serving and retired defence personnel is ready with its report.

    What I’m placing on the blog in the following lines is broadly what is expected out of the committee’s recommendations.

    However, please do be warned that the thought-process of the committee is only recommendatory in nature and is yet to be accepted by the PM, and also, that the final turn out could be different than what may be recommended.

    The low-down below on the majority of issues is just what can be reasonably expected, however kindly be reserved about bouquets or brickbats as yet till the time the matter is officially announced.

    One Rank One Pension for ranks other than commissioned officers: The concept of OROP as classically understood, may not be accepted. However the gap between pre and post 2006 pensioners would further be bridged. The last time this was done in March 2010 when the Committee of Secretaries had recommended the enhancement of pensions on 01 July 2009. The Govt would most probably implement further enhancement of pensionary weightages applicable to lower ranks to compensate them for their truncated careers thereby further reducing the gap. Not exactly OROP but would provide succour to lower ranks for sure. The weightages currently applicable are 10, 8, 6 and 5 years for Sepoys, Naiks, Havildars and JCOs respectively.

    Widows’ Pensions: Family pensions would be enhanced in all probability. As reported on the blog earlier, pension of widows would now be calculated with reference to the notional top of the 5th CPC scale within the new 6th CPC scales rather than the bottom of the scales. It may be recalled that till the 5th CPC, the pension of widows was calculated with respect to the top of the scale which was brought down to the bottom of the pay-band as a result of introduction of pay-bands by the 6th CPC.

    Enhanced Pension for Commissioned Officers: While the system of calculation of other ranks has always been different and more beneficial, the pension of Commissioned Officers has traditionally been linked with the system of calculation as followed for civilian employees. The Govt is however likely to increase the pensions of commissioned officers by calculating pension based not on the minimum of the pay band but by taking the basis of minimum of pay within the pay-band. This is totally in line with what had been decided by the Chandigarh Bench of the Armed Forces Tribunal in Sqn Ldr SS Matharu’s case, and by the Delhi Bench in Lt Cdr Avtar Singh and Sqn Ldr Vinod Jain’s case. This is also in line with the orders of the Full Bench of the Central Administrative Tribunal rendered for civilian pensioners as a result of the long drawn struggle led by Mr V Natarajan, President, Pensioners’ Forum, Chennai. The said stipulation shall bring much needed succour especially to officers who retired from the rank of Major and Major General. If ultimately recommended and implemented, in all probability, the stipulation may also be extended to civilian pensioners thereby particularly resulting in relief to officers who retired from the Junior Administrative Grade (Deputy Secretary to Govt of India) and Senior Administrative Grade (Joint Secretary to Govt of India). While the maximum relief would be for these ranks and grades, this would result in enhancement to other grades also.

    Dual Family Pension and Pension for married handicapped kin: Currently, widows of pensioners who were in receipt of two service pensions for two separate spells of service are authorised one family pension only after the death of the employee/pensioner. This bar on the second family pension would be removed in all probability. Handicapped kin of govt employees are authorised to family pension for life but according to the interpretation of authorities, such pension was being refused to married handicapped children. This was held bad in law by the Chandigarh Bench of the AFT in the case of Vinod Kumar Vs UOI and also by the Chennai Bench and hence was not actually required to be placed before the committee having been already judicially adjudicated upon. This regressive bar is also bound to be removed. Both these stipulations are also expected to be extended to civilian pensioners.

    Non Functional Upgradation: NFU for serving commissioned officers of the defence services is likely to be accepted. Though the signals are highly affirmative, nothing can be said till the time the same is done.

    Enhancement of Grade Pay and other pay+status related anomalies: Enhancement of Grade Pay and the status of officers of the defence services degraded by successive pay commissions may not be resolved at the instant stage though full efforts are being made by all parties. The major stumbling block is the report by a GoM headed by Mr Pranab Mukherjee that had placed a Lt Col of the Army in between the Junior Administrative Grade (PB-3/GP 7600) and the Selection Grade (PB-4/GP 8700) based on incorrect inputs by the Finance Ministry. In the said report, officers of the Finance Ministry had also reportedly informed the GoM that officers in the Army were being promoted to the rank of Brig in 23 years of service and Maj Gen in 25 years. Both figures are grossly wrong and since there was no chance or occasion provided for military representatives to rebut these incorrect facts, the injustice got solidified. It may be recalled that even earlier, wrong pay scales of military officers had been mentioned on Page 73 of the 6th CPC report as published in 2008 on this blog, which anomaly was only to an extent rectified when Lt Cols were upgraded to Pay Band-4. Fixation of initial pay for Lt Cols, Cols and Brigs is also linked to this issue. HAG+ to all Lt Gens may not be accepted.

    I would request readers again not to strongly react to the above and wait for all recommendations, and then the implementation, to be officially announced after which a detailed analysis can be carried out further.

    Indian Military : Service Benefits and Issues
     
  6. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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  7. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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  8. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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  9. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    Free E-Book: Impact of coming into force of the Armed Forces Tribunal, Reflections by Lt Gen S Pattabhiraman

    [​IMG]

    Most readers would be aware of Lt Gen S Pattabhiraman, PVSM, AVSM, SM, VSM, who retired as the Vice Chief of the Army Staff and was later appointed as Member of the Chennai Bench of the Armed Forces Tribunal. Commissioned in 1966, the General retired in December 2006 after rendering 40 years of service to the nation. Besides holding an engineering degree and MSc in Military Studies, while in service he also attended many other prestigious courses including one at Harvard. He also served as our defence attaché to Turkey. Personally speaking, I have the highest regards for him since all problems related to veterans and widows pointed out were duly taken care of by him with utmost sympathy. While in service, he was also known to personally reply to such issues and take effective measures rather than leaving it to his team of staff officers. One example of his sensitivity towards such matters related to a WWII veteran can be read by clicking here.

    After rendering remarkable judicial service in his second innings, the General retired earlier this year and has been kind enough to put his experience into words for the benefit of serving and retired defence personnel in the form of his ‘reflections’.

    The book can be downloaded from this blog free of cost by clicking here.

    http://www.mediafire.com/view/?yubvy9ocbxai78o

    Anyone desirous of obtaining a (paid) hard copy may do so from the publishers of Armed Forces Law Journal – Kirti Publishers, No 31 (Old No 29), 1st Floor, Palavedu Road, Mittanamalli, IAF Avadi, Chennai – 600 055, Telephone No 044-26840996

    Happy reading!

    Indian Military : Service Benefits and Issues: July 2012

    **************************************
    The General is a Paratrooper who continues to participate in para jumps.

    He was stuck on a tree in such a jump in Secunderabad where he was commanding the Division, and I had to extricate him! :)

    Unlike a Paratrooper, he is moderate in his consumption of alcoholic beverages and is quite sober, but can be pleasantly mischievous when the situation demand.

    His wife is a highly educated family and has a very deep knowledge of Tamil history.

    An excellent couple!
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2012
  10. Bhadra

    Bhadra Defence Professionals Defence Professionals Senior Member

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    Thank You Gen Ray for the qoutes, references and clips...

    This web site otherwise seems to have no concern for the Armed Forces and issues related to them except for all negetive issue which are highlighted without fail...

    Only a few photos of interest of lungers and messes..... a few of CI operations those too not conveying any thing...

    This forum seem to be lacking in that aspect in spite of this being "India Defense Forum" .Most of its DODO memebrs and intelligence community members exhibit stark anti Armed Forces attitudes and postures. They do not even hesitate calling names to the generals in general on filmsy grounds based on their prejudices and heresay.

    Some ex SS Officers are part of them venting their frustrastions......
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2012
  11. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    That is the fun of the whole show.

    It gives me a new life to debunk such opinions and keeps me employed and mind active so that I do not get Alzheimer's.

    I posted this so as to inform those who were in the Army of what is their entitlements and other issues.

    I was told about this website by Lt Gen Pattabhi just today.

    They are all concerned about me since I understand so little of money and that I believe that the Govt knows best and they will not cheat me of my monies.

    Check the latest WEEK, I believe there is some good article on how the Bureaucrats diddled the Army of their rank pay!

    In fact, only the other day someone gave me the CDA Pension website where one can find out the pension after the Sixth Pay Commission and I realised that I have been diddled of :inr: 3.000 every month since that time, all because I have no clue of pay and allowances and calculations.

    So this thread is for people like me to wake up those who are equally in the dark!
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2012
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  12. Bhadra

    Bhadra Defence Professionals Defence Professionals Senior Member

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    Too late to wake up for Generals like you ! Thousands must have looked up towards you to protect them. Instead of securing their interests you must have driven them hard up the mountains or gum trees being a general as is expected....

    Is not it !!!
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2012
  13. SADAKHUSH

    SADAKHUSH Senior Member Senior Member

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    Thank you Brigadier Ray for posting much required information. Is it safe to assume this ruling applies across the board for all three wings of the armed forces? Can you tell me if it is going to make any material difference to pensions of retired Honorary Flying Officers rank from IAF?
     
  14. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    Indeed.

    As they climbed so did I.

    We never had time to think about Pay and Allces.

    We were good soldiers, irrespective of our rank, thought the Govt knew its onions and would ensure our dues.

    It is only after retirement when others who are more conversant and now thanks to the internet and instant interaction, we are all realising how we have been duped.

    The yeoman effort of Maj Navdeep Singh has also played a major role in waking us up as also the Retired Officers' Organisation.

    Those days there was no cell phones or the internet as it is today!

    It is only yesterday that Gen Pattabhiraman guided me to the website.

    While one of my officers, who I met at the unit Golden Jubilee told me a few days back to log on to CDA (Pension)'s website and it had a facility to calculate your pension.

    I find I am being paid a pension that is :inr: 3000 less!

    On retirement, I had queried many a time the CDA (P) and my bank and both exhibited the usual bureaucratic inertia and never replied!
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2012
  15. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    The ruling applies across the board to all officers, and I take it Honorary Commissions too.

    There are similar calculator for pension for PBOR at their Regimental Centre website.

    IAF too has its own website.
     
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  16. Sunder singh

    Sunder singh Regular Member

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    My dad, uncles and brothers will be happy now they always argue for one rank one pay on dinning table and i prefer to have my vodka till they debates
     
  17. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    But then it is not one rank one pension.

    It is merely ensuring that the fraud that the Bureaucrats did with a sleight of hand has been exposed and all the thievery done is wiped out.

    One rank One pension is another issue where those who retire now have a much higher pension than those who retired before the 6th Pay Commission!
     
  18. Sunder singh

    Sunder singh Regular Member

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    thats rite i have seen this in my home
     
  19. Sunder singh

    Sunder singh Regular Member

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    thats rite i have seen this in my home
     
  20. Bhadra

    Bhadra Defence Professionals Defence Professionals Senior Member

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    Oh General Sir,
    What a sorry state of affairs !
    How can Generals lead such large number of troops telling them that their Mia Baap is actually a peon, a DO or an US in MoD and the Generals do not themselves know their own pay. After all our generals are not Tudors leading their Serfs. Our is a citizens Army. There is no place here for taking pride in the fact that you never cared for your pay. That is why you have been taken for a ride outrightly. Our officers and Jawans join the Armed Forces not because they are Rajputs and fighting is their Dharma but as a means of livelyhood.

    The largest casulty in this pay commission has been loss in soldiers faith in the Babus and the Government. They NO longer believe in their fairness and their sense of equity and justice.

    They are No longer taking anything blindly. They no longer believe their interests are protected by their seniors being believing soldiers
    .

    The present generation of officers is facing the consequent disturbing trends without any help from the Government !! God save the country if the soldiers stand exploited unionised and politicised as a consequence.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2012
  21. Bhadra

    Bhadra Defence Professionals Defence Professionals Senior Member

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    It is such a sorry state of affirs that if one Maj Navdeep Can stir the hornets nest, what are our three Service Chiefs doing. And what are the plethora of retired officers such as you doing !

    When ever you visits your units, you would not encounter your generation like Laat Sahab officers now. Thank God for small mercies...
     

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