Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Debate on OROP : CNN-IBN on 01 Jun 2015

Last evening, I was on a panel to debate OROP and allied aspects on CNN-IBN. My fellow panelists were Mr Ajay Prasad, a retired Defence Secretary, Mr Nitin Gohkale, a Defence Analyst, Lt Gen Raj Kadyan, former DCOAS and Chairman IESM (not of the Maj Gen Satbir Singh faction?).

As the comments of all panelists would be on Youtube, I will not belabour the issues, and misquote them (relying on a nearly 69 years old memory!).

My first comment aired on TV was that if the bureaucrats of MoD, Def (Fin) and Deptt of Expenditure, MoF cannot come out with the methodology and the exact amount, why doesn't the Prime Minister, who praises the Armed Forces, hand over the problem to Services HQ, obtain a draft Govt letter, then discuss it, and issue his orders to pay OROP. I gave the example of the DGL prepared by Services HQ in the Rank Pay case, wherein two of the four issues were upheld by then Attorney General for India, the late Shri Goolam Vahanvati. 

[The case is sub-judice on the other two issues which might be resolved in Contempt Petition (C) No. 328 of 2013 being heard from 14 July 2015 onwards.]

My second comment was that there seems an error in the figures given to the Defence Minister that in FY 2014-15 the OROP would cost Rs 8300 crores (approx) and it would balloon up to Rs 22, 000 crores. My reason for doubting the later figure is because of the 3% annual increment. It would be Rs 8549 crores and not a paisa more!

Unless, unless, the bureaucrats have had the Defence Minister let the cat out of the bag. The cat is that the 7th CPC would recommend a 250% increase in pay and the Govt has already accepted it! Only in that case Rs 8300 crores will become Rs 20750 crores and Rs 8549 crores will become Rs 21372.5 crores, though the recommendations would be applicable w.e.f.1.1.2016 i.e 3 months.

My third comment (and backed by Shri Nitin Gohkale) was that the recommendations of the 6th CPC for lateral absorption of Armed Forces personnel was accepted and approved by the UPA Govt but held back due to objections of the Ministry of Home Affairs.
*              *               *
My friend and Excel expert Brig (retd) Vijay Raheja told me that the Defence Minister is not far off the mark because arrears from 1.4.2014 till 31 Mar 2016 might add up to Rs 20,000 crores. My take is if prevailing 6th CPC Pay in the Pay bands remain then arrears will be 

2014-15                     Rs 8300 crores                      Total
                                                                      Arrears Rs 8300 crores
2015-16                     Rs 8549 crores
                                                                     Arrears Rs 16489 crores
2016-17                     Rs 8805 crores
                                                                     Arrears  Rs 25654 crores
2017-18                     Rs 9069 crores
                                                                     Arrears  Rs 34723 crores 
2018-19                     Rs 9341 crores 
                                                                                                                   Arrears  Rs44064 crores

Still lot less than Rs 62396 crores exempted by Finance Minister in FY 2014-15 to Corporates by way of tax exemptions and incentives!   


  1. There was a statement by some one in the discussion that the govt has no money to pay such a large amount.

    My suggestions are :-

    (a) With draw full amount paid to Gp A officers as NFU, which is totally undue and unjustified.

    (b) Stop pensions and perks of all Ministers and MPs who are having less than 20 years of service

    You will automatically accumulate more than enough money to pay dues of our soldiers

    1. There was no answer to my statement that Shri Arun Jaitley has told the Rajya Sabha in a written reply that Rs 62,398 crores were given to Corporates as incentives/tax exemption in FY 2014-15.

      It is just a matter of convenient amnesia for this Govt.

  2. Sir, I am sure I'll be able to find a link to the video. I have spent some time searching for it but could not obtain access so far.

    We'd be grateful for further guidance on the "other two issues" still awaiting resolution in the contempt petition. From what I had read of what had been widely stated to be the services HQs DGL (in the RTI campaign) there were quite a few other issues as well. As the summer vacation draws to a close, it would be really of interest how the litigation progresses further.

    Since the services DGL on Rank Pay was mentioned, on the lines suggested by you, it may not hurt for the DGL prepared on OROP to be used by the Government as the basis for the implementation of OROP.

    By now most doubts ought to have been cleared up and "complexities" resolved regarding OROP.

    To my mind the two "complexities" mentioned in your previous blog post too should not at all be difficult to resolve. The one regarding different criteria for time bound promotions should be simple enough for anyone to grasp as I've mentioned in this blog post.

    1. Please go to the CNN-IBN website or on youtube search for OROP Has the NDA Govt done a U Turn.

      Best of Luck.

    2. Thank you, Sir.
      I'd tried that. The video on the ibn web site failed to load.
      But the one on youtube was really wonderful to view. A link here leads to the useable version.

  3. The DGL prepared by the Service HQ is in line with the definition. There is no reason for the MOD to delay the implementation. The cost also will not be more than Rs.8300 crores. The recurring cost also will not be more than Rs.8500 crores. In any case it not Rs.22000 crores. If the CGDA, the MOD cannot calculate this simple working, let them hand over to Service HQ. The PM and the RM should take up the matter seriously and settle without delay.

  4. I appreciate you participation on the debate. You have rightly said about the DGL and the roll of Service HQ. It is high time the MoD and CGDA are overhauled with fresh people.