The ex-servicemen on Tuesday began the process of returning their gallantry medals to the government in protest against the implementation of the One Rank One Pension (OROP) scheme.
The ex-servicemen, who have been protesting at Jantar Mantar here for months now, began collecting the medals to be returned.
“We will initiate ‘Medal wapasi’ from all across the nation today, will also hold rallies,” said one of the protesting ex-serviceman.
The chairman of Indian Ex-Servicemen Movement, Major General (Retd.) Satbir Singh, had yesterday accused Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar of turning back on his assurance on OROP.
The government had earlier notified the implementation of the OROP scheme that will guarantee equal pension to military personnel retiring at the same rank with the same length of service, regardless of the date of retirement.
The notification, however, failed to impress veterans and they are continuing with their agitation.
The veterans had also announced that they would return their medals and would observe a ‘black Diwali’. The veterans are also threaten to restart their ‘fast unto death’ at Jantar Mantar beginning next week.
Veterans have listed seven deviations in the announcement, including annual equalisation, 2013-2014 financial year as the base year for calculating pension, taking the highest pension scale of 2013 as the base for calculation and not the average as announced by the government, not to link OROP with the seventh pay commission and accept that OROP once implemented continue forever and in perpetuity.