Friday, 24 October 2014

Tribunal or GoM or EGoM - what is the difference

The Govt has in front pages news item informed citizens of India that expeditious action has been taken on the Hon’ble PM’s commitment to PIO to provide them a life-time Indian visa and US citizens will get an Indian visa on entry. It clearly indicated that MEA and MHA acted quickly to honour the Hon’ble PM’s commitment to Indians permanently settled in USA and also to citizens of that country.

2.       We recollect that the Hon’ble Prime Minister has time and again in his recent speeches while ridiculing the Congress Party for not taking a decision on the OROP for 60 years stated that his Govt has given OROP in 60 days (“mere sarkar ne saath dinon mein OROP de diya hain!”). 

3.       But Outlook magazine (page 34, issue date: 27.10.2014) quoted the RM as having stated, “the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) did not meet even once during the Pak border crisis. All decisions on the matter were being taken by the PM and NSA. No one else was involved.”

4.       Wonder where the MoD was? And in the context that there appears to be some disconnect, how should we understand the RM’s interview aired on Times Now on 22. 10.2014 apropos his comment that he may have to refer the One Rank One Pension (OROP) issue to a tribunal in relation to the Prime Minister's speeches, even at Base Camp?

5.       Because, almost simultaneously, the PM was telling the Defence Forces that OROP has been implemented. Don’t believe me. Go to this link: -

6.       So, if the PM says what he did say and the RM intends to do what he says, there are a few seminal questions: -

6.1.    Does the PM want the RM to let some else (a Tribunal) take the decision on a purely Defence Forces matter?

6.2.    Didn’t the BJP ridicule Shri A K Antony’s method of no commitment on OROP in BJP’s pre-election speeches wherever a large number of Ex-Servicemen were in the audience, starting in February 2013 in Rewari?

7.       Permit me to place just the facts which will prove, if proof was ever needed, that it is imperative that the decision of paying or not paying OROP expeditiously should be the Raksha Mantri’s, and nobody else's other than the Finance Minister or the Prime Minister. Expeditious, because the increasing disappointment of not honouring the Prime Minister’s commitment to citizens of India who laid down their lives for this country and those citizens of India who (are unlucky to) live to retire from the Defence Forces and to be at the tender mercies of the MoD and CGDA.

8.       If the RM asks his staff to bring to him the Government of India mandates of the Comptroller & Auditor General of India (C & AG), and CGDA he would see that C & AG and CGDA have summed up their missions on their respective websites as follows: -

8.1.    C & AG ( “Our mission enunciates our current role and describes what we are doing today: Mandated by the Constitution of India, we promote accountability, transparency and good governance through high quality auditing and accounting and provide independent assurance to our stakeholders, the Legislature, the Executive and the Public, that public funds are being used efficiently and for the intended purposes.”

8.2.    CGDA ( “We strive to achieve excellence and professionalism in accounting and financial services and in performing audit functions.”

9.       At this point in this discussion, Hon’ble Raksha Mantri needs to take a few more moments of his valuable time to reflect on the following: -

9.1.    Did the C & AG propose the manner of the allotting spectrum to the Deptt of Telecommunications (DoT) and then audited DoT to bring out in the public domain the alleged malpractices in what is colloquially known as the 2-G scam which led to cancellation of many licences by the Hon’ble Supreme Court?

9.2.    Similarly, did C & AG propose the coal mines allocation procedure and then audited the Coal Ministry to bring out in the public domain the malpractices which led to the recent cancellation of the allocation of coal mines by the Hon’ble Supreme Court?  

10.     If indeed the C & AG had proposed the manner of allocation of either the spectrum by DoT or coal mining leases by the Coal Ministry,

10.1.  Wouldn’t there be a conflict of interest to protect its own officers when the malfeasance was detected,

10.2.  What credibility would C & AG’s audits have carried in the public eye? and

10.3.  Would C & AG have been able to disassociate itself from the allegations of financial malfeasance?

11.      MoD also has a Department of Defence/Finance (Shri Arunava Dutt, the previous CGDA was promoted and is now the Secretary and Financial Adviser to MoD) which appears to either lack the expertise or does not want to take the responsibility and resultant accountability after incidents mentioned below: -

11.1.   Def/Fin, by whatever nomenclature it had then, had no reply to questions raised by the DOP & T and MoF, Deptt of Expenditure in 2004 for the deduction of Rank pay and then adding it back to lower the pay scales of Defence Forces officers of the ranks of Captain to Brigadier and equivalents in 1987). Note 81 onwards of MoD File No. B/25511/AKDP/AG/PS 3 (a) may be referred to for authenticating the statement, and

11.2.   MoF, DoE stating vide ID No. 187654/2013/E.III (A) on 5.7.2013 that MoD has not prepared a draft reference for the Attorney General for India in the Rank Pay case and just forwarded the comments of CGDA on the Statement of Case dated 2nd April 2013 furnished by Services HQ to MoF, DoE for further action.       

11.3.   As witnessed by the scale laid down by Def/Fin in SAI No. 2/S/2008 whereby some Brigadier level officers are now drawing total emoluments (Rs 67000 Pay Band + Grade Pay Rs 8900 + MSP Rs 6000 = Rs 81900) higher than an Apex scale Army Commander (Rs 80,000). It would have been dismissed as “just a handful” but how does Def/Fin explain that every Maj Gen and above & equivalent (about 300 in number) will have to draw at least Rs 81901 on the principle that a higher ranked officer cannot draw less than a lower ranked officer! 

12.     MoF, DoE’s charter for Integrated Financial Advisers places the responsibility of financial advice on the FA (F No. 5 (6)/L & C/2006 dated 1.6.2006 refers.). Therefore, rightly, the FADS should have decided on the policy for implementation of the Hon’ble Supreme Court’s order  and not the CGDA.

13.     Now, Hon’ble Raksha Mantri may want to reflect further on the aspects of Conflict of Interest and more seriously lack of appropriate expertise of CGDA: -

13.1.   After the MoD’s D-(Pay/Services) conveyed vide two IDs both dated 06.12.2012 and its Division of Def/Fin concurred, CGDA furnished  a Draft Government Letter (DGL) on the manner that Rank Pay is to be paid. This DGL, after incorporating some changes advised by MoF, DoE, is the MoD’s Implementation Order letter dated 27.12. 2012.

14.     So we now have a piquant situation. Will CGDA also audit the implementation of its DGL, now the ibid Order dated 27.12.2012?

14.1.   Who will be responsible for errors brought out in the audit? MoD, FADS or CGDA? Or

14.2.  Will it be a Zero observation/objection audit?

15.     As for the aspects of lack of appropriate expertise of the CGDA,

15.1.   Firstly, two of the CGDA’s interpretations of the Hon’ble Supreme Court’s judgment in what became the MoD order dated 27.12. 2012 were found fault with by then Attorney General for India (late Shri Goolam E. Vahanvati) on 3.9.2013, leading to the issue of corrigenda dated 24.7.2014 to the MoD order dated 27.12.2012.

15.2.  Secondly, two more issues are unresolved because the CGDA has been selective in its information to the then Attorney General for India. CGDA’s statements of minimum pay for each rank are not supported by the 4th CPC’s report, even in Annex 28.1 to Para 28.113, and Major Dhanapalan having retired as a Major, could not have argued for an increase in the ceiling of the integrated pay scale as that affects only senior Colonels and Brigadiers as seen from the calculations provided by CGDA to the High Powered Committee in April 2012.
15.3   Thirdly, CGDA’s statement that MoF, DoE did not agree to Personal Pay betrays its lack of knowledge. There exists a Government of India, Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, (Department of Personnel & Training) O.M No.1/2/86-Estt.(Pay - I) dated the 10.4.1987 which states at Para 2 as follows: -

“2. In supersession of all the various existing orders, the President is pleased to decide that where a Government servant is promoted or appointed to another post carrying duties and responsibilities of greater importance than those attached to the post held by him, the provisions contained in FR. 22-C shall apply without pay limits” (emphasis supplied).

15.4.  On the aspect of the need to raise the ceiling of the integrated scale of pay, CGDA stated in a reply to RTI request on the applicability of Government of India, Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, (Department of Personnel & Training) O.M No.1/2/86-Estt.(Pay - I) dated the 10.4.1987 as follows: -

Office of the CGDA, Ulan Batar Road, Palam, Delhi Cantt-10

 Subject: Seeking Information under RTI Act 2005

Reference: Your application dated 25/10/2013 in r/o Shri S Y Savur

The parawise information/reply with reference to Para 6 of the above quoted RTI application dated 25/10/2013 in r/o Shri S Y Savur is furnished as under:

          Para 6 (i): No advice on the non-applicability or otherwise of provisions of Para 2 of DOP&T OM dated 10th April 1987 (quoted in the application) vis-à-vis Rule 7 (1) (A) of CCS (RP) Rules 1986 is found to have been rendered by this office in this case.

          Para 6 (ii): Neither any advice on ‘different options’ on this issue is found to have been sought by MoD nor given by this office in this case.

                                                                                                    Sd/----------------                                                                                              Sr AO (AT-I)
RTI Cell (AT) (Local)
U.O. Note No. AT/I/1483-Army/X (PC)/V dated 26/11/2013

16.     Does one infer that CGDA was unaware of the ibid OM or selective in quoting Rules that would deprive Defence Forces officers the benefits of the Hon’ble Supreme Court’s judgment?

17.     Despite the lack of expertise, MoD, under Shri A K Antony had entrusted the same CGDA in February 2014 with furnishing the procedure for calculations of OROP and also the procedure for payment.

18.     Germane to the issue of the differences in the estimates cost of OROP to the Public Exchequer by CGDA representing the MoD on the one hand and the Defence Forces, including those retired before 1.1.2006

19.     CGDA lacks expertise and understanding of the ranks, branches of officers, and rank and group structures of JCOs/ORs equivalents of the Defence Forces. There are varying ages of retirement, superannuation, discharge on completion of tenure etc.

20.     CGDA should only interpret implementation of financial rules laid down by its administrative Ministry, the MoD. The CGDA should not make the financial rules because it is not an expert as defined in Section 45 of the Indian Evidence Act and that lack of expertise shows in the inflated cost to the Public Exchequer of Rs 9100 crores.

21.     Serving and retired Defence Forces personnel, are aware, thanks to the RTI Act, 2005, that CGDA stated that MoD has classified the OROP file as MOST CONFIDENTIAL. Therefore, there is no way to provide correct  information on the methodology adopted by CGDA for an inflated estimate of Rs 9100 crores while the Defence Forces place the estimate at between Rs 4500 and 5000 crores.

22.     The thought process to refer OROP to a tribunal might have sounded right and logical if only the Defence Forces calculated the estimate as Rs 9100 crores and persisted with it while the CGDA pegged it at between Rs 4500 and 5000 crores.   

23.     We were told, repeatedly, that less Government of UPA meant postpone decisions by reference to Group of Ministers (GoM), and procrastinate on more difficult decisions by referring to Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM).

24.     Are we having more Governance now i.e. is MoD taking decisions expeditiously?

25.     Hon’ble Raksha Mantri, should just look at the following recent examples for an honest answer:  

25.1.  Anomalies from 6th CPC referred to 7 CPC on 24.8.2014.

25.2.  It may now be a Tribunal that will decide the quantum of OROP.

26.     What next?

26.2.  Will it be an Empowered Tribunals for harder decisions like broad banding of Disability Benefits?

26.3.  And for making effective date of payment of arrears of pension to 1.1.2006 instead of 24.9.2012?

26.4.  And for deciding to resurrect and the dormant National Litigation Policy?

27.     Hon’ble RM by wearing the hat of the Finance Minister may know that CBDT, which functions under the MoF’s Deptt of Revenue, files appeals in a Tribunal only if the disputed tax is more than Rs 4 lakhs, files appeals in a Hon’ble High Court if the disputed tax is more than Rs 10 lakhs and, files appeals in the Hon’ble Supreme Court if that amount is more than Rs 25 lakhs.

28.     But the MoD’s DESW files appeals whether the outgo is Rs 1000 or lesser. Ironically, the fee for the Govt Law officer and the process costing the MoD many times the amount of benefit to a war widow or Next of Kin or even an Ex-Serviceman! 

29.     But, have things changed in MoD after 16th May 2014? Only the semantics appear to have changed.

30.     Does MoD care as much for its own Ex-Servicemen who are natural born citizens of India (superfluous to add “as Government of India cares about PIO and US citizens in the visa issue”)?

Satyam Ev Jayate, or does it?

Jai Hind


  1. Dear Sir,

    Hats off to your surgical post-mortem of the issues and placing most apt references to bring out the apathy of this Govt which is yet get the hangover of Lok Sabha results and still happy to be with a part-time sick person as RM of this great country.

    I have only one humble submission, the write up may be sent or uploaded to the person (s) who call the shots at the end of the day in the present political dispensation (not referring to the bureaucrats). Otherwise, it will be read only by the a small fraction of serving lot and handful of veterans whose BP would shoot up ! I can say it with confidence, having discussed about your blog and Maj Navdeep's blog, the awareness level of officer community leave alone the men is putrid. Most of them seem to be neck deep in AR marks, pleasing the boss, anxiety about next posting/promotion or some honours and awards hanging in front of them. Life just goes gone till such time they are passed over or become medically unfit for further progression in life, they may tend to spend sometime in looking at the burning issues of defence fraternity and how we have been duped by the bureaucracy since 3 CPC, with the political masters being mute spectators.
    The top brass of three services are in their own world and not even attempt to know what ails the organisation and do not look beyond the coterie around them.

    That's life. I did not intend to sound pessimistic and if you and my fellow bloggers have something to submit to disprove what I had said is untrue or far from truth may say so in crisp and polite language!
    Jai Hind! May God bless you with health,mental alertness and moral support to carry on with your war against the political set-up and bureaucratic buffeting !

  2. @Young50,
    Not a surgical post-mortem (issues are not dead!) but an analysis with my limited faculties!

    2. I am a surgeon now and bring every issue to the information, not notice of the Chairman, CoSC.

    3. As for publishing this post, go ahead and do it because I have sent emails to those who I think/thought should know my views.

    4. I blog for Satyam Ev Jayate.

  3. Firstly national false promises to citizens of INDIA.Secondly same internationally.NRIS beware of it.Thirdly what is going to happen.So SORRY no speeches are good speeches.

  4. I've stated it elsewhere in slightly different language in the past that specific records of financial loss caused to the exchequer, on account of repeated fruitless litigation embarked upon by sections of the "machinery", certainly is an area that could use an investigative approach by affected stake-holders or even right thinking, independent individuals or associations.

    The abbreviations RTI and PIL readily spring to mind at the very thought of what manner of issues might have combined to provide motivation for the pernicious approach to ESM welfare hinted upon at para 28.

  5. Sir,

    1. Grateful for your continued efforts. My humble submission is that there is greater need for use of social media to make public aware of our issues e.g Maj Navdeep has MPs, TV anchors and social personalities re-tweeting or supporting the issues. Content and effort wise your blog will have a much better and wider impact than most.

    2. Mr Jaitly is basically a babu. A lawyer who has relied on his oratory skills in his career (be it as a lawyer or a politician). He is not a go getter or "leader" type material (if he had these skills he would have inspired electorate in his constituency and would not have lost the election in Modi wave). Our bad luck that we are struck with such a Defence Minister.

    3. In view of para 1 please feel free to edit/not to publish these comments.

    With warm regards,


    1. Being informed is the best weapon.

      Therefore, even para 1 qualifies for publication. Only personal attacks, innuendos, insulting comments are not published.

      If you can get a wider audience, please use all methods at your command.


    2. I do wonder whether RM /FM really meant what he said about orop tribunal since tribunals are meant for adjudication when two parties fight over a decision.In OROP no decision is yet to be taken.Hence what would be the cause of the fight
      I do strongly feel that this a pressure tactic being applied on ESMs & Services Hq to change their demands & follow what is being imposed by Def ministry on the ( ill )advice of CGDA

    3. "Pressure tactic being applied on ESMs & Services to change their demands"???????????

      You must have done speed reading of this post.

      What pressure tactic? CGDA estimates Rs 9100 crores and Services HQ estimate is between Rs 4500 crore and 5000 crores.

      Can understand pressure tactics to beat down the figures if Services estimated Rs 9100 crores and CGDA placed it at between Rs 4500 crores and Rs 5000 crores!

      Are YOU ALSO getting the figures mixed up?

      Thanks for the humour-out- of uniform!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

    4. Well, humour apart ,it is to be seen who blinks first .When i say demand it is not about money per se but the way it is to be implemented so that the final out go will be based on what the babus feel is the right amount.(500 +1000=1500 crores sanctioned in the two budgets).Even the 4500 crores is not palatable to the babus (sic).Indication of this is already given by RM when he wants us to lower our expectations.
      Wish we all were very good astrologers with a capability to correctly gaze into the future instead of finding humour with each other:)

    5. apologies for finding humour in your seriousness.

    6. No offence taken Sir.I was just trying to emphasize the sinister ways of the babus against the Services.They see us in numbers & not as a Nation's last frontier .Till this disconnect is resolved it will always be court cases for us

  6. Farmers are at liberty to suicide.!
    Education loan borrower guardians are at liberty to suicide !
    The soldier will never do it .

  7. Indeed the text of PM's speech at Siachen does mention that promise of OROP had been fulfilled. But, it has been wrongly reported.

    PM's full speech in Hindi is available on You Tube, just type in - narendra modi's speech in siachen on 23 oct, and you have a 17:02 min long video.

    In this video clip at 12:15 min. onwards his words were " OROP... Kitne dashak beet gaye, Yeh aap ka sapna poora karna mere hi bhagya mein likha hai."

    Thank you,

    N S Jain

    1. Sir,
      Please see his speech on the narendra modi website. It clearly says what is reported. Same as the speech he gave to the Combined Commanders Conference on 18 Oct 14.

      So, .....

  8. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  9. Pl see Shobhaa De's article in today's Sunday Times titled "From Siachen's Heights, NaMo Made a Cracker of a Point on Diwali". She has supported 'Respect for Armed Forces' and 'OROP'. She has put across the points in a different and effective manner. Hats off to her.

  10. TRUTH and FACTS brilliantly demonstrated. Every one should endeavor to act upon to derive the legitimate ,and also pursue actions to expose hypocrisy ,falsehood,and lies of MOD,GOI.Purse actions against those responsible for all this -socially,politically and legally.


    From October 31, the Right To Information (RTI) replies can be accessed online by all, not just the applicant.
    xxxxxxx The DoPT has already initiated the process of uploading RTI responses on the RTI online portal through a new feature which is being extended to other ministries and departments. For displaying the RTI applications and replies, an option is provided to the Central Public Information Officers (CPIO) and First Appellate Authority (FAA) to upload these information.

  12. Who says the Colonial Royalty has left the country post Independence? The data of the DAD-VVIP Guest Houses on the CGDA websites speaks otherwise. Should the DAD be renamed as DSTE(Department of Self Tourism and Enjoyment) running at the Expenses of Public Exchequer ?
    Refer to the CGDA website ( regarding the availability of DAD’s Own VVIP/VIPS Guest houses across 30 odd important tourist locations/Hill stations, where the information available qualifies each location with the tourism available in these locations rather than workstays. The rates for a private stay for the DAD staff & Family are lesser than you and me pay as tips to the room boys. Also refer to the DAD Cadre Strength at their website (
    IDAS Cadre Streangth & Guest House details (emphasis on VVIP & VVIP AC Suites):
    (a) Total IDAS Authorized Strength =553 (out of which the CGDA=1, Addl CGDA=2, PCDA=12,Remaining IDAS Jonnies=538)
    (b) Total Guest House details at 31 (breakdown given at the end) Tourists locations (a) VVIP Suites =58 (b)VIP suites= 105 (c) AC Rooms/Holiday homes=111, (d) Non AC Rooms= 130
    .3. Now it is left to your imagination to make your own guesstimates, regarding wasteful, unaudited expenses from the public coffers. This 58 VVIP +105 VIP suites are just meant for 3 of their VVIPs as mentioned above .Even if the 12 PCDAs are included the total tally comes to 163 VVIP/VIP AC suites for 15 of these Princely royalties( 11 VVIP/VIP suites per head) . Remaining 538 IDAS jonnies get 230 Suites/Holiday homes (@ one suite for every 2 of them). There is a requirement to introspect these wasteful expenditures from the Defence budget, against the shortage of weapon systems for the poorly equipped Infantry soldier. The amount invested on these Guest houses as well as the recurring expenditures would be more than adequate to equip an Infantry battalion with state of art weapon systems. This amount would have been more than enough for buying of those SindhuRakshak Batteries which was denied to the worthy Admiral. IT PAINS TO NOTE THAT SUCH WASTEFUL EXPENDITURES ARE BEING INCURRED AT THE COST of RESOURCES MEANT FOR NATIONAL SECURITY (DEFENCE BUDGET).
    .4. It may again be interested to note from their own website that few of the Holiday homes (not the VIP suites) are Converted quarters. Which indirectly implies that, these are willfully undersubscribed Government accommodations by their own Employees for the greed of getting more beneficial HRA. The loss to the state out here is on two fold viz HRA paid to an employee when Govt accommodation is existing apart from the subsidized/unutilized facilities being provided as Holiday homes.
    .5. A similar kind of research if done on the so called Air-conditioned GH/ Transit facilities (mostly underutilized/Subsidized across the country) of the DRDO will again would be an eye opener !!. Similar audits are also required to be done on various Defence PSUs(Ministry of Defence Production units), CSD etc. This exercise would bring out much needed resources for equipping our soldiers with the necessary hardware.
    .6. Incidentally , also there is a need for an audit of Vacant government quarters (trivial reasons not to be accepted), and their employees drawing HRA which is more beneficial to the employees, especially in places like periphery of Metro cities ( Example Avadi, Tambar am ,Whitefield and similar places).
    .5. The issue out here is one of ethics, wrongful gains and lack of effective Governance.