Panel for revision of OROP
Defence minister Rajnath Singh constituted a committee to work out the modalities and methodology for the next revision of pensions to the over 25 lakh ex-servicemen and widows under the OROP (one rank, one) scheme. The committee, headed by the Controller General of Defence Accounts (CGDA) and including representatives from the three services, will submit its report in a month.
- The move comes in the backdrop of the CGDA having asked the department of ex-servicemen welfare in the MoD to clarify "whether any logic exists to initiate the process of OROP revision once the pension of past and current pensioners was equated with effect from January 1, 2016" during the implementation of the 7th Central Pay Commission.
- OROP was implemented by the NDA-I government with effect from July 1, 2014. The government, however, did not accept the case made by veterans for "pension equalisation or adjustment" every year, and notified that it will be done only at five-year intervals.
- The first five-year period ends on July 1, 2019. OROP basically means payment of uniform pension to personnel retiring in the same rank with the same length of service, irrespective of their date of retirement.
- Some veterans have argued that increase in pensions under the 7th CPC is not ‘equalisation’ of pension under OROP.
- Upward revision of pension due to implementation of the 7th CPC should not be linked to equalization under OROP.
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led NDA government on July 2018 announced the 'One Rank One Pension' scheme for ex-servicemen.
Salient features of the OROP scheme
- The benefit will be given with effect from 1st July, 2014. The present government assumed office on 26th May, 2014 and therefore, it has been decided to make the scheme effective from a date immediately after.
- Arrears will be paid in four half-yearly instalments. All widows, including war widows, will be paid arrears in one instalment.
- To begin with, OROP would be fixed on the basis of calendar year 2013.
- Pension will be re-fixed for all pensioners retiring in the same rank and with the same length of service as the average of minimum and maximum pension in 2013. Those drawing pensions above the average will be protected.
- Personnel who voluntarily retire will not be covered under the OROP scheme.
- In future, the pension would be re-fixed every 5 years.