Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal criticised Minister of State for External Affairs General(Retd.) V.K. Singh on Wednesday for his ‘mental health’ comment over the alleged suicide of an ex-serviceman reportedly over the government’s “failure” to implement the One Rank One Pension scheme.
“Shame on u VKSingh. He twice got medals from President and once from COAS. He was a decorated soldier,” Kejriwal tweeted. Earlier, the former army chief made a controversial statement as he questioned the mental health status of the Ram Kishan Grewal who allegedly committed suicide, adding that that very issue of OROP should be kept away from politics.
“Most aspects of the OROP have been covered and that if someone complains over a few pennies and the delay of a few years, he should not be indulged,” Singh said. “It was a demand made 40 years ago and this government has fulfilled those demands. Some money was to be given, which the Reddy Commission is rectifying. If you cannot wait for that, then it is definitely wrong,” he added.
One Rank One Pension, a longstanding demand of ex-servicemen, grants retired armed forces personnel pension parity with officers and jawans of the same rank who are retiring now. The ex-serviceman had participated in protests over OROP and his fellow-protesters today asked leaders not to politicise the issue. A group of ex-servicemen say the OROP scheme implemented by the government last year fails to meet key expectations.
Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi, who was detained today after he tried to meet the kin of ex-serviceman Ram Kishan Grewal, lashed out at the Delhi Police for arresting the former jawan’s family besides himself. Rahul Gandhi was stopped close to the gates of the Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital here when he went to meet the family of the victim Grewal.
Delhi deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia was also ‘forcibly removed’ from the hospital premises after he went to meet the grieving family. He later tweeted, “I had gone to the hospital to meet the family of the ex-serviceman, not to launch a dharna. What mistake have I done?” The police also detained Jaswant Grewal, the son of Subedar Grewal, after he joined AAP workers in impromptu protests outside the hospital. Gandhi called Jaswant’s detention a “shame.”
The Trinamool Congress also joined the beeline stating that its representative is on his way to the national capital to chime in the developments. Subedar Grewal’s family wants the government to fulfill the demands that he made in a petition that he planned to hand over to Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar later on Tuesday. Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar has sought details of the incident from the department of ex-servicemen welfare. Grewal consumed poison last afternoon. However, the cause behind Grewal’s suicide is yet to be ascertained.