How much social status do Army Officers have in India?

Discussion in 'Politics & Society' started by Bushmills, Feb 22, 2012.

  1. Bushmills

    Bushmills Regular Member

    Feb 7, 2012
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    Evening all

    I was wondering how much social status do Army Officers have in India compared with other professions, law, accountancy medicine etc?

    In addition, how do salaries compare with other professions?What are pensions like and how long do you have to serve before you collect one?

    Asking out of idle curiousity more than anything.
    pmaitra likes this.
  3. Bangalorean

    Bangalorean Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

    Nov 28, 2010
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    Though there are Indian military professionals in this forum, let me answer your question based on what I know. Others can add more information.

    First, about salary. If you look at just the monetary compensation, the salary of Army officers is much lower than most other professions. A reasonably successful young engineer in an IT company can earn a salary at the age of 30, which an Army officer will not earn even at extremely high positions. Medicine and law are even more lucrative, and if one has a private practice, one can become obscenely rich practicing law or medicine.

    That said, Army officers get quite a few perks such as free medical treatment, excellent facilities, good (and free) accommodation, subsidized provisions and booze :)daru:), and so on.

    However, coming to social status: Army officers enjoy very high social status in India. There is a lot of respect for the uniform, more so among the middle classes. :namaste:
    Mad Indian, Koovie and SPIEZ like this.
  4. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

    Mar 10, 2009
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    EST, USA
    Congratulation Bushmills for your first thread. I am discounting the introductory thread.

    There are quite a few current and former military personnel from India here who would be able to give you a nice idea about your question.
  5. Iamanidiot

    Iamanidiot Elite Member Elite Member

    Dec 21, 2009
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    Social status plenty.They are respected and honoured almost all the tri services personnel are honoured.In south-india a Sikh is synonymous with an army officer.
    Mad Indian likes this.
  6. Mad Indian

    Mad Indian Proud Bigot Veteran Member Senior Member

    Jan 27, 2012
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    Podigai Hills.
    Thats so true isn't it.....

    And ya all army men not just officers are respected throughout India.... But i think we can do still more for them by increasing their salaries, subsidies etc...
  7. Blackwater

    Blackwater Veteran Member Veteran Member

    Jan 9, 2012
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    Akhand Bharat
    lot of status, the most lavish lifestyle among middle class in India
  8. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

    Apr 17, 2009
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    The country as a whole respects the men in uniform.

    But that is in mental terms but not in the practical terms.

    For instance, there will be some dereference shown, but if one is to interact with a military person, be it for governmental work or otherwise, they will be treated at par. Nothing wrong in that, but when officers and soldiers come on leave, no priority is given to hear their legal or civil cases and most of the work remains unattended by the time the leave gets over. In the pre Independence days, priority used to be given. The worst sufferers are the soldiers in this regard.

    The Bureaucracy shows total disdain to matters military. The politicians or bureaucrats have had no military experience and they override military issue without know a thing about the same. That is the reason why it appears that India, in a military and strategic manner, seems to be bumbling along.

    There is always the bureaucracy that want to be on top of the military.

    You may see this:

    Earlier, the pay was a pittance and it was hardly encouraging people to join. It is after the 6th Pay Commission, that the pay has looked up, but then it is not comparable to the civvie street.

    There is no free accommodation for Officers. We pay the same rate as other Govt servants. There is no free or subsidised electricity or water and that is a mistaken belief amongst many. The Junior Commissioned Officers and troops get all these things free.

    There is no subsidised rations or alcohol and that is another mistaken belief. The military pays all the taxes on the same. However, where it appears to be cheaper than the market is that there are no cuts that distributors and dealers get since the items are direct from the company to the consumer. The middlemen and their profits are eliminated.

    The medical facilities are free. And ex servicemen pay a one time sum when they retire and are then entitled to some medical facilities that are extended to the serving personnel.

    Pensions for those who retired before the 6th Pay Commission is not attractive and so most have to get a second employment to survive.

    There is an impression that Military Officers have a lavish lifestyle. It is more because of the military grooming than actually being lavish. Our house are more organised and kept 'neater'.. Since we travel all over the country on postings, we pick up interesting artefacts and even furniture and that looks exotic to the civilians. And we are hospitable; again because of military grooming.

    Our Clubs are well kept, which are run on the member's subscription. They are exclusive and not open to the general public. Being military clubs, the discipline is maintained and this gives a general impression of the Clubs being 'posh'. In civilian clubs money speaks and many who have money may not have a proper grooming. Many of our Clubs like the Gymkhana and the Secunderabad Club were open to the Civilians and as their numbers grew they outvoted the military members and took over the Club. Having taken over, they have not been able to maintain the high standards since money speaks! So, this idea that Military lives a 'lavish' lifestyle is misplaced. It is just that our orderliness in managing our houses and institutions give that impression.

    Recently, there has been a brawl between a filmstar and his group with a South African businessman in a high society restaurant in a 5 Star hotel. The filmstar was a Nawab by birth and so taken to have been polished. Yet, there was this brawl. The reason: the Nawab's group was boisterous and raucous. Such a thing would not have happened since in our Clubs one cannot speak loudly so as to disturb the others, nor could there have been brawl since that would attract a heavy disciplinary action. Hence, we appear to maintain 'lavish' lifestyle since it appears to many to be 'ohI so fancy!'.

    Military life is difficult, but the Nation, in general, appreciates their work, even if not the Govt and the Bureaucracy!
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2012
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