Chennai: The brave pensioners of the Indian armed forces are not the only ones to be affected by the passage of time eroding the real value of pensions and the prevailing system throwing up any number of anomalies.
While the necessity for an OROP has been presented very well, bank pensioners around the country are hoping their grievances over old retirees being hit the hardest in pension schemes would also be highlighted for presentation to the authorities concerned.
It is being pointed out that the pension scheme of 1995 for bank employees, modelled after the government scheme, has not been revised in two decades although the salary for current employees has been revised four times in that period.
An anomaly pointed out by Dr B. Ramji; vice president, All India Bank Retirees’ Federation, is that of a General Manager retiring in 1987 drawing Rs 5,000 less than a clerk who may have retired in June 2015. A GM retiring now would get nearly twice as much as a retiring clerk.
Dr Ramji also said that while Dearness Relief neutralisation is at 100% for serving bank employees, those who retired before November 2002 get a far lesser percentage on the count of neutralisation.
The loss in real terms for such retirees could be as much as Rs 10,500 per month. He also said that persons who retired between April 1998 and November 2002 have suffered from at least Rs 5 lakh by way of reduced pension and commutation.
Among other grievances that retired bank staff have is family pension is paid at a much lower rate and lower ceilings than to government and RBI employees. The difference in these cases could be almost 50%, Dr Ramji said. An inferior medical scheme as compared to serving employees is also a problem being faced by pensioners.
This despite a directive from the chairman of a 2009 Parliamentary standing committee on personnel, public grievances, law and justice that a medical scheme for retirees should be on the same lines of the one for serving employees. Retirees are asking for modifications to the scheme to bring them on par with serving employees with reference to premiums to be paid for medical insurance.
The retirees also nurse the grievance that the granting of many demands would in no way affect the exchequer payment of government as the banks themselves have sufficient funds in pension corpuses to undo all the anomalies. All retired bank employees should be given pensions along the lines of the OROP scheme for personnel of the armed forces, they plead....
Location: Tamil Nadu