One Rank One Pension (OROP) is one of the most trending topics that can be found on almost every news channel and newspaper is. With so many protests and discussions taking place on the same, let us have a look at the history of OROP and look at it from different angles
First, before discussing anything about it, let us understand what OROP actually is-
• One Rank One Pension (OROP) is a scheme whereby defence personnel are given equal pensions for same rank and length of service, irrespective of their date of retirement.
• OROP was into practise till 1973, where it served as a basis for determining the pension and benefits of the Indian Armed Forces.
• Indira Gandhi’s Government removed OROP from the then budget and stopped granting the same.
• It was then, in 2011, that a committee, Koshyari Committee was formed, which examined the grant of OROP and strongly recommended that it should be implemented in the armed forces in the soonest possible hour.
• OROP was an integral part of the election manifesto of many political parties during the elections of 2014. Political parties including, Indian National Congress (INC) and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), made promises to implement the same, if elected.
• On 15th June, 2015, failing to see government’s attempts to launch OROP, the ex-servicemen’s organisation launched hunger strike and protests nationwide.
• On 5th September, 2015, Defence Minister, Manohar Parrikar announced that the government has accepted the model of OROP and its benefit will be brought into effect from 1st July, 2014.
OROP serves as that medium which ensures equality of pension to defence personnel and helps them to support their financial needs.
Presently, as pensions are dependent on the last salary drawn and consecutive pay commissions have hiked salaries, soldiers who retired recently receive more pension than the ones who retired earlier.
With the implementation of OROP, this factor will no more prevail and everybody of the same rank will get the same amount in the form of their pension, irrespective of their date of retirement.
With the announcement being made for the implementation of OROP, we hope that the veterans no longer sit on their hunger strike and, that it brings a smile of contentment on their faces.