Ex-servicemen return 7,500 gallantry medals over pension spatMarch 14th, 2009 - 7:08 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, March 14 (IANS) In pursuit of their demand for ‘one rank one pension’, retired soldiers of varying ranks here Saturday returned 7,500 medals won in combat and for distinguished service.
Thousands of veterans gathered earlier in the day at the Jantar Mantar observatory in the heart of the national capital for the protest.
“This is for the third time that we collected the medals from across the country and returned them to the president. A 10-member team including two widows went to the President House and returned the medals,” commodore (retd) Lokesh Batra said.
On the first occasion, the ex-soldiers had returned 2,500 medals to a representative of the president. On the second occasion, over 3,000 medals were returned.
The veterans under the aegis of the Indian Ex-servicemen Movement are demanding that irrespective of the date on which the soldier retires, he or she should get the same pension, which rises every time there is a wage revision.
The demand has now arisen because of the recommendations of the Sixth Pay Commission, which did not address the ‘one rank one pension’ issue. The government has rejected the demand on administrative and financial grounds.
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Tags: aegis, batra, commodore, distinguished service, first occasion, gallantry medals, heart, jantar mantar observatory, lokesh, member team, New Delhi, protest, rank one, service thousands, soldier, third time, wage revision, widows