Sixth Pay Commission guesswork for military officers

There are many commenters on this blog who assume that this blogger is running a campaign to stall a much-deserved raise for the service officers from the Sixth Pay Commission. Nothing could be farther from the truth. But there are a few facts that one can not ignore.

Amidst the hype and the hoopla, the most important thing is to maintain a sense of balance and perspective. This means tempering the “unrealistic” expectations from the pay commission. Notwithstanding the noise from the services top brass about the 4.5 times increase in salary, let us look at three objective indicators.

First and foremost is an interview by the Chairman of the Pay Commission of October 2007. The fancy expectations of Rs one lac per month can be safely discarded going by what Justice Sri Krishna states in no uncertain terms.

Q. Are government pay scales going to be made at par with private companies?
A. There is the general expectation that government pay scales be brought at par with salaries in the private sector. It will not possible to match private sector salaries. Boys coming out of school are getting salaries of over Rs one lakh per month and more. We have to look into this whole issue to see how much parity we can achieve.

Second indicator is the increase in the salaries of the President, Governors, Speaker and other constitutional functionaries. The basic salary of the Cabinet secretary, the highest paid government servant, would be at 75 to 80 percent of the President, which has been fixed at Rs one lac per month. The salary structure would accordingly move downwards from the Chief to the last trooper. This calculation leads to a figure of 2.15 to 2.25 times of the current basic salary after the pay revision. The current numbers for Basic + DP + DA are already matching that figure.

Third indicator is the Union Budget. No provisions have been made for the sixth pay commission recommendations in the budget. However, the Finance minister has spoken of the leeway available to him in the FRBM Act for his fiscal deficit — 0.5 % of GDP, i.e., around Rs 27,000 crore. This would include the pensions and the arrears as well. This amount is insufficient even to double the defence salaries and pensions, leave apart the other central government departments. The Railways have budgeted a mere Rs 5000 crore for the impact of the pay commission– 4000 crore for the salaries and 1000 crore for the pensions– for their 14.7 lakh employees. Their wage bill last year was Rs 27,145 crore, including Rs 18,985 crore on staff costs and Rs 8,160 crore on pension charges. This indicator thus hints at an even lesser figure for pay increase to that arrived at from the second indicator.

Let us not get too carried away by what one always hears from the service chiefs and the Raksha Mantri. They ran a sustained campaign to have a senior service officer as a member of the Pay Commission, but to no avail. The hype being created by the top brass in the media is actually leading to unreasonable expectations among the rank and file and will result in greater disappointments at a later stage.

Anyone is capable of these back of the envelope calculations, which do not portend a liberal grant. The only solace for the military officers could be the military service factor being counted in separately, and a major increase in the specific military allowances. The release of arrears would obfuscate the impact of lesser “actual” increase in the monthly emoluments.

Now, let me preempt certain comments. The honour, glory, duty, ungrateful nation, corporate salaries and so on, usually put forth by the service officers. That translates as– military is special, it is a tough life, everyone else is corrupt, so pay us more than the civilians. Let them remember that the military is an institution of the state and does not operate extra-constitutionally outside the domain of the state. The size of the cake is more or less fixed unless the finance minister can conjure up some magic. The government can not afford a step-motherly treatment for its civilian employees and has to distribute to everyone with an even hand. In any case, the paramilitary troopers serving in Naxal infested areas are also leading a tough life as do the foreign service professionals serving in Iraq or Afghanistan.

When the comparison is with the corporates, why not compare apples to apples. The service officers need to check out their CTCs. Or better still, they can go to the management institutes which run these six-month management programmes for service officers and take a look at the CVs of some of their colleagues for their current CTCs. Let us not forget that the outlandish corporate salaries are for the minuscule few, that too from the top engineering and management institutes. These salaries are not applicable even to a top central government service like the IAS, which has only 60 odd vacancies annually, compared to 2000 plus for the Army every year. This should place the whole thing about defence salaries in perspective, vis-a-vis corporates and other central government services.

Many suggest that a small hike in salaries would result in an exodus of service officers. It would only affect a few fence-sitters, who would have even otherwise quit a few years later. They would advance their outward movement. The bulk of the officer cadre will continue to stay. There hasn’t been any significant change in the number of applications received for premature retirement and resignations in 2006 and 2007. It seems likely that similar figures will remain irrespective of the sixth pay commission largesse.

Finally, to ward off those personal attacks on my integrity and patriotism, let me recount what George Orwell put in the suppressed preface to “Animal Farm”: “If liberty means anything, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear”.

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171 Responses to Sixth Pay Commission guesswork for military officers

  1. sujata March 5, 2008 at 12:25 pm #

    @PRAGMATIC

    “If liberty means anything, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear”.

    Same thing can be applied to the Jawans as nobody wants to hear them as well.

    Anyway,how can they even dream about liberty,they are just bonded labourers.

  2. Sandeep March 5, 2008 at 1:43 pm #

    Mr Pragmatic,
    I do not agree to your argument that its only the fence sitters who want to quit and they will quit not withstanding the sixth pay commission…I say this because if you see the figures of officers who have put up their papers for qiutting the services, there has been a steady increase in the numbers…However, even if for the sake of argument it is assumed that its only the fence sitters who will quit and not the majority of them…what about the large defeciency in intake of officers? The present pay scales does not attract youth to join th services…more over coupled with the fact that the life is hard(which not only includes physical hardship but also separation from families, frequent transfers, threat to life during various operations and many others…)the future of the forces seems not very bright if atleast the higher payscale requirement is not met. Remember that great nations cannot be built if they have weak armed forces.
    Regards,

    Sandeep

  3. PS March 5, 2008 at 1:56 pm #

    [1] Tiny Steps:
    Neighbouring Militaries are comfortably enTrenched in business & politics. This kind of ‘side business’ is thankfully culturally foreign to us. However, encouraging to see baby steps to economic self RELIANCE. See

    http://www.aifdonline.com/team.htm

    [2] More Trg Centres:
    Sample, functioning Ice Bars, Shopping Malls, Appu Ghars, Housing Estates, Travel Agencies, Billiard and Beauty Parlours, Shooting Galleries, Golf Courses, etc will help ease lateral shifts. Can easily be built in Cantts with the same or slightly adapted / skew logic.

    Pay Commissions – why worry then ?

  4. San March 5, 2008 at 3:20 pm #

    Well brought out Pragmatic,
    You pay peanuts you get monkeys. The sane ones will abandon ship the rest will start behaving like monkeys. The day is not far away when Army is deployed for CI duties and will end up competing with the police in the collection of the moolah. The blinkered attitude of the Govt is pushing us headlong into such a situtation. As the saying goes….People get the Govt that they deserve—The Govt will get the Army it deserves!!!!.

  5. Pragmatic March 5, 2008 at 7:18 pm #

    @San/ Sandeep/ Sujata:

    We are coming from different directions. I am not making a case for poor salaries. I am just inferring from the pointers that all of us see but very few observe. I would be more than happy if I am proved wrong :-)

    What will happen if the pay rise is lesser than “expected”/ “deserved” is anybody’s guess? If the Indian economy takes a slight downturn, will the situation still remain unchanged. It might be too soon to judge the consequences, when the actual recommendations haven’t been even made by the pay commission.

  6. Pragmatic March 5, 2008 at 7:24 pm #

    @PS:

    [1]Are you a planning to do an Ayesha Siddiqua on Indian MilBus? If not a book, even a brief would make for some interesting reading.

    [2] The initial babysteps have already been taken. It is just a matter of time.

  7. Disgruntled March 5, 2008 at 10:23 pm #

    Dear Pragmatic,
    Your view on the pay commission issue is what a large percentage in the forces share.One wonders why the govt has to spend money every ten years on this farce called Pay commission and why not just merge the DA in the basic pay every tenth year and add another 2-3 thousand Rs,which is what these experts are going to do ultimately.
    Sandeep wrote about deficiency in officer cadre.A lot depends on how we perceive the requirement.If we let concerned man/appointment do his job without interference and are ready to take responsibility ,accept mistakes,then Indian army can function efficiently with the present strength of officers.

  8. sanjay March 5, 2008 at 11:02 pm #

    why so much of fuss whether salaies be increased.its required dammit…as simple as that.

  9. KK March 6, 2008 at 9:52 am #

    @Pragmatic

    One point I think the deciders of the revised pay package should not overlook is that ‘you get what you pay for’. More pay means better men to work for you. In light of country’s global ambitions, we need motivated employees on its payroll. The economics of the whole thing will final catch up. with the market rates of employees on the upswing government needs an attractive proposal to retaintalent in the long run.

  10. Vinod March 7, 2008 at 1:34 pm #

    Going through the debate, I wonder whether there are separate pay scales for Armed Forces personnel or is it at par with other central government services?

    If the pay scale is different and less, I feel there is a strong enough reason to protest against government apathy. However I think that both Armed Forces officers and Gp ‘A’ service officers start off on same scales. If the former loses out on the pay scale midway, then it calls for organisational restructuring (an in house affair).

    Why at all should there be MSP? Somewhere I read that a miner is at greater risk than soldier. Does MSP stand for Miner Service Pay? In any case MSP gives a touch of ‘FSP’ – Fidayeen Service Pay. Instead why not ask for 100% SF/ free ration to separated family/ up gradation of Army Schools to public school standards at subsidized rates/ quality of ration/ quality of facility maintenance/ quality ECHS/ etc. In short if the existing facilities are brought upto ‘A’ class, it will offset most of the X factor – another in house exercise.

    “Poor Soldier”

    No other organisation provides the kind of social mobility that Armed Forces provides to its soldiers. Ask a JCO as to how he places his family as compared to others from his village who could/did not join the Armed Forces (probably the IA can do better by learning some lessons in bringing up the self pride & confidence of its men from IAF & IN)! I am sure the reply will give some insight. At this level too there is a need to strengthen and improve the existing rather asking for something that will be an exercise in futility.

  11. EIDELON March 7, 2008 at 2:49 pm #

    VINOD
    ARE YOU THE UNINFORMED OR PLAIN SIMPLETON?
    INHOUSE RESTRUCTURING! WHICH COUNTRY ARE YOU FROM?
    STARTING PAY SAME – YES BUT … LEAVE IT
    NO POINT IN EDUCATING A PRETENDER OR A PLAIN PERSON.

  12. sujata March 7, 2008 at 4:01 pm #

    Now, let me preempt certain comments. The honour, glory, duty, ungrateful nation, corporate salaries and so on, usually put forth by the service officers. That translates as– military is special, it is a tough life, everyone else is corrupt, so pay us more than the civilians. Let them remember that the military is an institution of the state and does not operate extra-constitutionally outside the domain of the state. The size of the cake is more or less fixed unless the finance minister can conjure up some magic. The government can not afford a step-motherly treatment for its civilian employees and has to distribute to everyone with an even hand. In any case, the paramilitary troopers serving in Naxal infested areas are also leading a tough life as do the foreign service professionals serving in Iraq or Afghanistan.

    The size of the cake is not the same.It has grown much bigger with the economical boom.Yes,for that even the civilian emplyoees should get a bigger share than before.And at the same time the Army should get even bigger.
    Even bigger,why?

    1.Civilian Employee’s working-hours start from 9 in the morning to 5 in the evening.Army works 24 hours a day for 365 days a year.When there is a need,their leaves are also not granted.

    2.Civilian employees are that lucky to enjoy the company of their family and vice versa.This should be the no.1 point in my list,as the company of family is the greatest joy that one can have.Poor army!

    3.C.E can lead a settled life through out their tenure.Army people have to forcefully find some +POINTS in the nomadic life style they have because they can’t avoid it.

    4.A civilian employee does not bother about his job security if he has got some problem in his physical fitness,for a fauji it’s a nightmare and a threat to his bread and butter and at the same time the nature of his job makes his physical fitness vulnerable.

    5.A civilian’s wife can take up a job or start a bussiness in the city/village where her husband is posted.But for a fauji,his wife can’t pursue a carrier and hence both of them have to manage somehow within one salary.

    6.A civilian employee’s child does not have to bear the pain of separation from his father and the hazards of a nomadic life that makes him join 20 schools in 15 years.

    7.A civilian does not have to climb the mountains and bear the chilly nights nor the hot hazardous deserts.

    8.A civilian does not have to kill somebody because that’s his job.Do you think the fauji’s are made of some different material who love killing?

    9.A civilian does not have to undergo through the mental trauma of a war and don’t have to see his colleagues dyeing in front of him.

    10.Just forget all the above points,now just consider this one.Do civilian employees have to give their lives do draw their salaries?

    Now don’t give me that look of “so what….life is unfair’.Yes life is unfair till the time we don’t try to make it fairer.

  13. PS March 7, 2008 at 5:22 pm #

    [1] PM Morarji Desai:
    Addressing tps at BB Cantt Srinagar, ~1979 -

    IAF fellow gets up in the ‘darbar’ and boldly asks MD a question:
    ” Sir, why can’t we have more married accommodation for airmen / soldiers ? ”

    MD answers: “Sit down; it is also good to stay away from your family ” ie count your blessings. [ ..(mocking) laughter. ]

    Which is why he could get away with his brand of Single Malt and the Nishaan-eP award ?

    [2] @Sujata – interesting point regarding parent – child separation. Knew a Fauji who was home very infrequently. His kids grew up in his hometown with grandparents etc and could identify all the Uncles and Aunties in the neighbourhood by name. Only jarring note-his younger son id’d his rarely seen Dad as just ‘Papa Uncle’ what else ?

  14. Disgruntled March 7, 2008 at 7:45 pm #

    No other organisation provides the kind of social mobility that Armed Forces provides to its soldiers. Ask a JCO as to how he places his family as compared to others from his village who could/did not join the Armed Forces (probably the IA can do better by learning some lessons in bringing up the self pride & confidence of its men from IAF & IN)! I am sure the reply will give some insight.

    Well, as rightly brought out ,only up to a JCO,may be!

  15. Pragmatic March 7, 2008 at 7:49 pm #

    @ Vinod:
    What is easier for the top brass: organisational reform or seeking more alms from the government?

    @Sujata:

    An ideal civil employee versus the worst-off military employee. Is that the comparison? I don’t think that every civil employee would agree to the comparison. For the sake of the argument, let us say that if the military officer doesn’t want all these disadvantages, then he ought to move out and become a civilian.

    Let me again say that I am not disputing the need for better pay for military personnel. I am just inferring from the pointers that this is not likely to happen.

  16. deep March 7, 2008 at 8:05 pm #

    I am just inferring from the pointers that this is not likely to happen.

    I thought god lived in heaven. Thanx for informing me he exists on websites in guise of so called intellectuals

  17. Pragmatic March 7, 2008 at 8:35 pm #

    @Deep:

    With all civility and humility, may I submit these quotes as “ungodly” responses:

    #A good listener tries to understand what the other person is saying. In the end he may disagree sharply, but because he disagrees, he wants to know exactly what it is he is disagreeing with.

    #Prejudice is a great time saver. You can form opinions without having to get the facts.

    The final word from Aristotle -
    It is just that we should be grateful, not only to those with whose views we may agree, but also to those who have expressed more superficial views; for these also contributed something, by developing before us the powers of thought.

  18. Vinod March 7, 2008 at 9:30 pm #

    @ EIDELON

    I do not fall in either of the category!

    @ Disgruntled

    The paragraph was meant for PBOR level and maybe to an extent to even Officers level!

    @ deep

    Looking upward for Gods to descent and rescue is precisely what is ailing the Armed Forces. High time that the lesser mortals assume the role of saviours!

  19. Mahesh March 7, 2008 at 10:23 pm #

    Been following this intersting debate as a uniformed officer. Glad to know that there are people who are bothered. Personal Opinion:

    (i) Hike is invetiable– question How much? It would never be adequate.

    (ii) Restructuring Of Armed Forces –Need of the hour—within the perview of Armed forces themselves.Better Hurry up!

    (iii) National Gratitude to the soldiers– short lived. Crisis to crisis.

    If I remember correctly a comment made by Gen Shankar Roy Choudhary post Kargil conflict on National TV “Maintaining Armed forces is like paying the premium for the life insurance policy, you default once, there is no problem till the time there is no crisis, god forbid there is a crisis— you would always regret the default payment”

    Its upto the Nation–to realise and understand this.

    At the end friends keep up this debate, one feels nice that atleast there is a group of people, so what if they exist only in the cyberspace, who are bothered about the Men in Uniform. Maybe one day the Nation would wake up and be more responsive to them rather than paying a lip service on every 15th Aug or 26th Jan when the honours are read out.

  20. sujata March 8, 2008 at 9:51 am #

    @Pragmatic

    What is easier for the top brass: organisational reform or seeking more alms from the government?

    None of them are easy,but both of them are necessary.Only one of them won’t help it fully.

  21. Pragmatic March 8, 2008 at 10:09 am #

    @Sujata:

    We have visited this area often. The poor salaries and organisational reform are not two disparate areas, but closely interlinked. My view is that poor salaries, besides many other things, are a fallout of organisational decay and atrophy.
    Your prescription of overemphasising pay hikes is akin to putting a bandaid on the blister outside, while the cancer grows unfettered inside. It might provide a very temporary solace, but such patchwork will do nothing in the long term to alleviate your situation.

  22. sujata March 8, 2008 at 10:18 am #

    @pragmatic

    An ideal civil employee versus the worst-off military employee. Is that the comparison? I don’t think that every civil employee would agree to the comparison. For the sake of the argument, let us say that if the military officer doesn’t want all these disadvantages, then he ought to move out and become a civilian.

    Let me welcome your list of civil employee-fauji comparison.And if not you,then some other civil employee’s views are also welcome.

    About the military people’s disadvantages,they all knew it before joining and they also knew that these disadvantages are unavoidable,still they are into it.I don’t think all mothers in our country have got the heart to send their kids to the war-front.If some of them have sent,then atleast give them the credit.

    But now don’t tell them that the disadvantage of a poor salary is also something unavoidable.

    “Moving out” is not that easy too.Most of them want to move out at this point but their applications are not accepted.Some are really clueless about their fate in the corporate world.And some more daring ones have already moved out.The queue of give-me-a-year-to-think-of-moving-out is too long.

  23. hardtalker March 10, 2008 at 8:52 pm #

    Reality will sink into the thick skulls of the government when youngsters stop volunteering altogether for officer entry into the army.

    Indias premier defence training establishment,NDA, has just about 50% seats filled this year.

    Lets wait for the day it drops to 5%!!!!!!

    The country badly needs a war…a war that leaves a trail of mass destruction and death…we probably need to pray that it happens. …And then hope that the fools will learn from their mistakes.

    The Army has patriots…yes…but intelligent patriots… …pay peanuts…u get monkeys…well said.

  24. kartik March 11, 2008 at 12:04 pm #

    Would you like to join an organisation which you join at the age of 21-24 yrs and it tells you at your age of 38/41 years that now you are now unwanted in this org.
    Not only this the org also tell you at your age of 44/45 that now you will notget any increase in your pay
    then when you are 54 years of age it just throws you out.
    and this treatment is given to atleast 75 percent of you who join together.

    At the age of 45 why should be forced to start looking for a new career. at the age of 22 only why do’nt you join an org which looks you after till your age of 60 years.

    AND ON THE TOP OF ALL THIS YOU ARE NEVER TOLD ABOUT THE FACTS ABOVE. BECAUSE ORG DOES NOT CONSIDER IT IMPORTANT

  25. H S Sikka March 11, 2008 at 2:23 pm #

    All the civilians who have said things here be it in favour or against the pay hike i would like to say thanx to them for taking time out to atleast address the issue.
    i agree to wht karthik has said that at point of getting into the armed forces u r never aware of the facts about ur career progression. only thing u think about at that time is the OG (olive green) and the stars which u will adorn on the shoudlers.
    But if u see now the cases of corruption in Armed forces are on rise. The honour is going down the hill and so is the respect for the personnel in uniform. Why do we not respect the police personnel because we know that he can be purchased in one green note. And i am afraid that if the things keep on going like this in armed forces that day is not far away.
    At last i will say that if i get a tummy full food at home why will i go and look at someone else’s platter and try and steal or snatch it.

  26. Vinod March 11, 2008 at 9:09 pm #

    I do not think that any civilian is against a handsome pay hike for you guys. “None but the brave deserves the queen” (read favourable SPC).

    All that the civilians are trying to say is that a decent hike will offset 5% of your miseries. The remaining 95% shall still remain and the solution to those are neither with the civilians nor with the politicians nor with the bureaucrats. The issues need to be addressed ‘in house’ by your organisation.

    Incidentally as a civilian, I feel with your supposedly meagre pay you guys are much better off than us. Your sophisticated families gives me a complex, your clean surroundings gives me a complex, your clubs, messes and institutes gives me a complex, your discipline gives me a complex, the way you guys carry yourself gives me a complex, the way your children are successful in all spheres of life gives me a complex, the way you handle your stressful life gives me a complex…..etc…etc.

    The only reward for my good deed in this birth would be a career with the Military in the next birth….minus the internal mess you guys speak about!

  27. hardtalker March 11, 2008 at 11:24 pm #

    “Your clean surroundings gives me a complex, your clubs, messes and institutes gives me a complex.”

    Honestly , those days are over….those were the good old days. Now, the vast differences in salaries has resulted in the corporate world offering such facilities as perks and privileges, in fact better facilities, to its employees.

  28. asdf March 12, 2008 at 5:12 pm #

    Mr VINOD
    please go and see the meerut cantt near paltan mandir area.
    there are lot many cantt where civs has occupied the cantt and the stn cdr is totally helpless because CEO is the real boss

  29. Vinod March 12, 2008 at 8:35 pm #

    @ asdf

    Was the stn cdr always helpless? If yes, then probably the Brits would have been in occupation of your land and not the civs (Indians). Who is responsible for the degradation of the authority of your stn cdr? If it were the civilians, then quote one instance where the attempt was resisted by your CEOs?

  30. Friends March 13, 2008 at 3:59 am #

    Looks like another insurrection Rising from Meerut. Right timing.

  31. sujata March 13, 2008 at 11:05 am #

    @ Pragmatic

    The poor salaries and organisational reform are not two disparate areas, but closely interlinked. My view is that poor salaries, besides many other things, are a fallout of organisational decay and atrophy.

    A good pay package can help make some changes in the organizational reform,I think curruption can be tackled to some point that way.It can also help in giving the army people a good quality of life that is missing these days,and hence a better environment can be created(less of suicides,less frictions among colleagues,end of jealousy etc etc.).Money gives you a better quality of life,I think everybody will agree to it.

    If we go for organizational reform only with the same pay package,that will also help,but only to some extent.That certainly can not resolve the monetary situations,Many of the problems will remain unsolved.

    I must say both are necessary,which one happens first,that hardly matters,both are most welcome.

  32. sujata March 13, 2008 at 11:29 am #

    @Vinod

    Incidentally as a civilian, I feel with your supposedly meagre pay you guys are much better off than us. Your sophisticated families gives me a complex, your clean surroundings gives me a complex, your clubs, messes and institutes gives me a complex, your discipline gives me a complex, the way you guys carry yourself gives me a complex, the way your children are successful in all spheres of life gives me a complex, the way you handle your stressful life gives me a complex…..etc…etc.

    That’s the charm of being in army.And if you think we are leading a better life with that poor pay,I would say yes,we do,and that is nothing but the fruit of our hardwork.

    We know how to make the most of the resources we have got with proper maintanance,we know how to manage our manpower.We know how to draw happiness from the little time we get to find our husbands/sons/fathers at home,and we also do know how to make that happiness linger till the next time he comes.

    It is just like a fashion show that looks so meticulosly planned and executed,but nobody knows about the pain and hotch-potch that goes on in the green-room.Anyway,we don’t mind the hardwork,but we certainly would oppose our under-paid status.

  33. PS March 13, 2008 at 12:55 pm #

    Some ‘trivial’ spirit, gut, recruitment & post retirement reforms etc ? Along with the salary hikes.

    [1] Identical Ration Scales: For all Ranks. Same op. environment, physical demands. So..
    [2] Spartan Officers Messes only… Silver to Quarterguards. Zero Mess parades.
    [3] RT’s ( Maulvis, Padres, Pundits, Granthis ) to be granted Officer rank**..
    [4] Equal Wine quotas for all ranks: No need for brass to get 16 bottles while a Sarge 4.
    [5] Scrap all sycophantic Regimental March tunes named after Brass eg ‘Kathpalia March,’ ‘Nirmal March’ etc
    [6] No Brass to be allowed appointment as Ambassador, Governor, Govt Wks, similar appointments or Political Activity for 10 years after retirement.
    [7] Scrap Golf from the Fauji Menu forever. OK Shooting Galleries, Hockey, Football.
    [8] Common Q’s and Counters for all in Canteens whilst in civilian dress.
    [9] Ban the recruitment of Topasses in the Navy (see Navy Recruitment ad in TOI, page 23, Delhi edition dtd 20 Dec 2007.)
    [10] Scrap the outsourcing of medical facilities, specifically ECHS. Start Veteran Hospitals in all Cantts. Plenty of land available. Half the infrastructure costs saved.
    [11] Stop all Officer entries except thru NDA and from NCO / JCO ‘trains.’ No shorts.
    All full pants with defined exit policies.
    [12] Improve the crappy quality of medals. Take a look at the ‘Kabul to Kandahar Star 1880’, ‘The Burma Star WW II’ and the ‘Paschmi Star 1971’.(I have all three lying around.) Why do current medals look like 50 paise coins ? Technology should have improved matters a 100 years on ?
    [13] Do away with scarves and sashes on uniforms. Silly. Ok, keep the aiguillettes – never know when the ADC may need to tie the boss’s horse.

    **{Recall that it was a single British Chaplain who blocked the headlong, panic stricken retreat of British soldiers in 1849 in The Second Sikh War and he was the single ‘pivot’ that got them the Empire.
    {One woman’s honour started WW I,II too } To quote:
    ‘On they galloped (14th Light Dragoons), crowding too close together, they overturned four of their own guns, upset wagons and horses. The flight of the cavalrymen was halted by a Chaplain the Rev. W. Whiting. He was attending the sick and wounded at a Field Hospital when he saw frightened dragoons fleeing the battlefield. The Chaplain stopped them and demanded to know what had happened. ‘The day is lost !’ cried a dragoon. ‘All our army is cut up and the Sikhs have taken our guns and everything.’
    ‘No Sir, ‘ the Chaplain said . The Almighty God would never will it that a Christian Army should be cut up by a pagan host. ‘Halt Sir, or I, as I am a Minister of the word of God. I’ll shoot you.’ That stopped the rout.
    ..Under the cover of darkness the Sikhs withdrew, taking most of their guns with them as well as three British Regimental Colours and leaving politicians, soldiers and historians to debate for years whether the Brits had won the Battle of Chillianwala or was it a draw ? The British lost 2357 men killed and wounded. Havelock described it ‘one of the most sanguinary ever fought by the British in India and the nearest approximation to our defeat.’

    Moral of the story Pundits, Maulvis etc can use their moral and military authority more if better installed.

  34. Pragmatic March 13, 2008 at 1:11 pm #

    @Sujata:

    I must say both are necessary,which one happens first,that hardly matters,both are most welcome.
    Beg to differ with you here. We can’t put the cart before the horse. Pay hike is like band-aid while the real disease goes untreated. They can’t be dismissed in the same vein. Reform and restructure is the way out. Pay, promotions, quality of life, rations, medical aid, schools, jobs, spouses, suicides, corruption flows from a lack of real reform.

  35. trusty March 13, 2008 at 2:58 pm #

    @PS
    [1] Identical Ration Scales: For all Ranks. Same op. environment, physical demands. So..
    [2] Spartan Officers Messes only… Silver to Quarterguards. Zero Mess parades.
    [3] RT’s ( Maulvis, Padres, Pundits, Granthis ) to be granted Officer rank**..
    [4] Equal Wine quotas for all ranks: No need for brass to get 16 bottles while a Sarge 4.
    [5] Scrap all sycophantic Regimental March tunes named after Brass eg ‘Kathpalia March,’ ‘Nirmal March’ etc
    [6] No Brass to be allowed appointment as Ambassador, Governor, Govt Wks, similar appointments or Political Activity for 10 years after retirement.
    [7] Scrap Golf from the Fauji Menu forever. OK Shooting Galleries, Hockey, Football.
    [8] Common Q’s and Counters for all in Canteens whilst in civilian dress.
    [9] Ban the recruitment of Topasses in the Navy (see Navy Recruitment ad in TOI, page 23, Delhi edition dtd 20 Dec 2007.)
    [10] Scrap the outsourcing of medical facilities, specifically ECHS. Start Veteran Hospitals in all Cantts. Plenty of land available. Half the infrastructure costs saved.
    [11] Stop all Officer entries except thru NDA and from NCO / JCO ‘trains.’ No shorts.
    All full pants with defined exit policies.
    [12] Improve the crappy quality of medals. Take a look at the ‘Kabul to Kandahar Star 1880’, ‘The Burma Star WW II’ and the ‘Paschmi Star 1971’.(I have all three lying around.) Why do current medals look like 50 paise coins ? Technology should have improved matters a 100 years on ?
    [13] Do away with scarves and sashes on uniforms. Silly. Ok, keep the aiguillettes – never know when the ADC may need to tie the boss’s horse.

    Points 1-13 are hardly reform. Cutting down on rank priveleges will make little difference. point 7 is downright funny in the present context. i agree that a serious look at unnecessary ceremonials is required esp in cases where it results in wastage of manpower.
    i cannot see how the services will become a more attractive option if Topass entry in the navy is scrapped (pt no 7).

    i would agree with pragmatic that a pay hike though needed and welcome is not going to solve our problems. serious introspection at the highest level is required to rejuvente the system. which comes first is now a foregone conclusion so lets hope the next step follows.

  36. PS March 13, 2008 at 4:16 pm #

    @trusty

    point 1, 4, 8: Less Wine & Dine, less military caste. An ounce of Bolshevsim or Israeli example ?

    point 5: Sycophancy is NOT a rank privilege for chrissake. ‘At your feet or at your throat’ was the native style which the angrez tried to finish when they made the Regiments. Why lapse now into kow tow feudal styles ?

    point 6: More bending to the bureaucracy by the brass for post service personal favours is a rank privilege ? Quote from Ashok Mahajan’s book ‘Satanic Verses on the Indian Army’

    ‘Your predecessor was too loud in his bark”
    The Rakshamantri to the Chief did remark;
    “Stop using ‘if’ and ‘but’
    Learn to keep your trap shut,
    You’re earmarked for our Embassy in Denmark”

    point 7: Golf is seriously a troop sport ? Check out the number of soldiers wasting time and effort in building and maintaining such play areas for ‘executives.’ Heard of the personal swimming pool constructed for brass in a Cantt in N. India ? Details in the press.

    point 9: DIY, why topass ? Or Box thunder ? A rank / caste privilege ?

    point 10: Considering that people are living longer (our local RWA considers senior citizens to those above 85 only) and that most faujis are going to draw a pension for the same number of years as they draw a pay, Veterans Hospitals may be welcome reform from the ECHS.

    Point 11. ex NDA may be the only right way in – catch ‘em young – lees cribs along the years. Reform by scrapping DE/ Tech Grad entries. Short service – no good for the people who join. In today’s competitive world a kid has already peaked in his career by 35.

    Point 12. Ok, if everyone is happy with the quality of the gongs today. However, might be a good idea to see the USI collection or check out the older Indian Army medals being exported by a Karol Bagh dealer en masse, in sacks to collectors in the West.

  37. Pragmatic March 13, 2008 at 6:37 pm #

    @PS:

    Sounds like a “broken windows theory” for the Indian Army. The original theory was applied by Guiliani in fixing crime in New York.

    @Trusty:

    PS’ ideas can be a good start. Much more is needed and very quickly at that.

  38. Jai March 13, 2008 at 8:38 pm #

    @ PS

    You seem to be an intellectual. Four generations wasted? Thankfully not the fifth one.

    @ SPC Bonanza

    Lt Col/ Col TS 41000-1700-56000 (if witto is to be believed) – applicable to 80%

    13 yrs service to retirement (for majority) – 8 increments. Cheers!

  39. Singh March 13, 2008 at 9:32 pm #

    Forget about pay hike.Does anybody consider this, “THERE IS DEFI OF APPROX. 13,000 OFFICERS IN INDIAN ARMY.EVERY YEAR,THE GOVERNMENT IS SAVING THE PAY AND ALLOWANCES OF THESE 13,000 OFFICERS.AND THE JOB OF THESE 13,000 OFFICERS IS BEING DONE BY THE OFFICERS OF INDIAN ARMY.THEN WHY NOT THE GOVERNMENT DISTRIBUTE THE P&A OF 13,000 OFFICERS TO THE REMAINING OFFICERS.”

  40. Pragmatic March 13, 2008 at 9:56 pm #

    @Singh:

    And the 1.1 million soldiers take no load due to this shortage. Why not share the salaries with them as well?
    When a cabinet minister holds the additional charge of another ministry, he would also get two salaries, going by your logic :-)
    No GOC would then want a deputy and a couple of brigade commanders. He (and his staff) can do all these jobs and get extra salaries. Wow, that would be some fun!

  41. trusty March 14, 2008 at 5:43 pm #

    @PS
    1. Point taken. however to the best of my knowledge there is some consideration for the phy activity involved in deciding ration scales(eg. a cadets scale is more than that of an officer)

    2.”Spartan officers messes.” most officer’s messes are pretty spartan by current standards. in fact its a shame to be housed in such a place. yes certain command messes may appear to be done up…but trust me its only the main foyer. if anything we need decent acco.

    3. No comment

    4. Point taken. But why a wine quota at all?? esp when all it causes are a lot of accidents/incidents. rationalise to a mean figure maybe.

    5. Same would go for all MG Roads, JNUs, etc etc…whats in a name??

    6. No citizen can be disallowed any public office…unethical and unconstitutional. Some people will compromise thier positions for future gains…but such is the charachter of mankind.

    7. All sport is equally good whether troop games or not. this is the only organisation which actively promotes sports…and we need to encourage it. dunno abt the pvt swimming pool u mentioned. only an aberration rather than a rule.

    8. RHIP- Rank Has Its Priveleges. Basic norm since NDA days.

    9.Which civ employee cleans up his own bogs??

    10. Its the world of outsourcing. We need to minimise non-ops load. ECHS excellent initiative.

    11. We need all types of officers- Education, Engg, Constructor(Navy),etc.NDA entry alone cannot meet these diverse requirements. SSC is not bad. I know guys who have got absorbed outside pretty well. it is not the answer to all ills either, i concede.

    12. irrelevant to context.

    i like pragmatics reference to the Delhi Metro model. Branding of the Armed Forces correctly with clear exit policies will be good in attracting talent. After all, the OLQs are pretty sought after in all spheres if we can correctly project that min level is automatically attained by passing through the rigmorale of the forces for x years.

  42. hardtalker March 14, 2008 at 5:49 pm #

    Pragmatic …for Defence Minister…Cheers….he seems to know it all!

  43. PS March 14, 2008 at 7:48 pm #

    @trusty

    Srl 5:
    If military folks accept tunes, songs in ‘praise’ of CEO’s, ok. Unusual for other departments worldwide. The ‘Nirmal March’ played at the Beating Retreat attracted much adverse comment in the Press and jokes by western foreign mil. attaches. Dunno, military sycophancy should at best get the OBN. Usually scores better, so maybe it is a legit. window of opportunity up the very steep pyramid.
    Another two verses please, from Ashok Mahajan’s book: ( Thanks for your time )

    The Caravan of the Corps Cdr Sainik Shaw
    Quite a place on wheels we soldiers ever saw
    Decor of a 5 Star
    Colour TV and VCR
    A double-bed duly dunlopped, if he missed his squaw.

    General Sodhi speaks in clipped accent and style
    May deign to nod at us, once in a while
    But loosens his stiff neck
    Before the Defence Joint Sec
    Then you see him turn smarmy and servile

    (ISBN 81-7167-143-8. Pub. Rupa and Co 1993)

    Point 8,9: Don’t think other militaries have similar privileges at all – Canadians, say ? The Pentagon has twice the number of loos required as it was built during the days of racial segregation. Sena Bhawan has half the number needed one hears, as some are star barred. Then there was this skit at the NDC by non army ‘student offrs’ many moons ago – on ‘privileges.’ Annoyed heavy metal then.

    Point 10. Agreed. No one wants ‘busy*’ military doctors looking after exservicemen. But, the huge money being paid for ex servicemen referrals to civilian hospitals (who work on good profit margins) can be easily used to set up Veterans Hospitals in Cantts with a few good Mil adm fellows to keep it ship shape. The staff can be market-salary civilian medics and paramedics. After all, the Army does run a ridiculous fashion institute with much brass effort involved. See http://www.aifdonline.com/team.htm
    * By the way given a chance perhaps 80% of mil docs would scoot exit today, wonder why ? Anyhow, wait out to check out at 58 about non operational deal.

  44. trusty March 14, 2008 at 8:23 pm #

    @ PS
    Although this discussion is now going a bit wayward, the following is submitted:

    the US Navy has got aircraft carriers named after its admirals. western mil attatches continue to pay due respect to thier decision. as for the press, the lesser said the better. in any case call it “Twinkle, twinkle litte star” …how will it change anything?

    Dunno about the number of loos at the pentagon but lets admit that Indians are a casteist society and the armed forces are but a part of the larger society. The Navy incidentally had abolished the Topass branch in the past with disastrous consequences. Basically what works for the others may not work well here.

    In a country where health care is absymal, if an org is providing good care, it needs encouragement. The discussion was that less people are joining and how can internal factors be changed to improve the situation. ECHS is a positive step in this direction so cant figure out what u got against it. Equal for all ranks too.

    Yes 80% of docs would like to leave..thats precisely what we are discussing here, isnt it?
    havent read the book you mentioned…but the quotes sound pretty cynical. will give it a miss.

  45. Pragmatic March 14, 2008 at 9:15 pm #

    @hardtalker:

    I take offence :-( Why not the Prime Minister? Oh, you might have reserved that for yourself. In that case, I’ll let the offer go :-)

  46. enjoyinglife March 14, 2008 at 11:47 pm #

    “In war,there is no prize for runners up”….in a few years…u have dimwits flying a 150 crore jets in the airforce….and likewise in the army , navy……enjoy time that time…..bbye

  47. trusty March 15, 2008 at 7:07 am #

    there are two problems that need addressing:
    1. How to attract good and sufficient talent?
    and
    2. How to ensure satisfaction of people already recruited and prevent attrition?

    Now both these may not be totally congruent and if policies which are beneficial to the new entrant are made they may well end up antagonising some of the present lot. And then we have to realise that nobody has ever become wealthy by serving the nation.

    Some measures:
    1. Better family support structure. Acco, security, creches etc.
    2. Reduction in field tenures if possible (by ensuring that everyone does his turn and diplomatic measures to reduce deployments where possible)
    3. Minimise transfers.
    4. Better pay and allowances. Mil service pay if introduced would be a step in the right direction. Yearly increment to be a decent amount.
    5. Reduction in time spent in unnecessary ceremonials/misc duties esp in peace stations.
    6. Adequate opportunities of learing/gaining academic qualifications while in service.
    7. Clear exit policy.
    8. Greater on-job exploitation of SSC entry and minimising thier training time.
    9. Creation of ‘brand Army/Navy/IAF” which would automatically add value to the individual when he/she joins the service.
    10. Revitalisation of JCOs/NCOs….esp in the Navy where rank devolution has happened.
    11. Internal restruction to permit greater promotion avenues. Real increases in pay/perks with rank.
    12. Travel Regs etc to be revamped. Dont make the soldier to claim every pie. Give him his entilement.
    13. Present method of expenditure of public money only fuels corruption. Needs to be reviewed seriously.

    any comments ??

  48. PS March 15, 2008 at 10:10 am #

    @trusty
    1. Family Accommodation:
    Looks shiny good in large Cantts – so the view to the passer by. Also happened to visit wholly primitive stuff 20 to 40 yrs ago in Agra, Mathura, Nabha, Sangrur, Jullunder, Jorhat, Tezpur, Rangiya etc etc. Don’t suppose much change since 1857. No money, never improvements. [ By the way, The PM's Residence was sold on the internet - details fully reported in the newspapers. The President's Bhawan laundry service was being used by a Delhi Hospital and Maternity home - racket caught after a long time - details available as published. If the Supreme Cdr and the Head of the GOI are in acco problems what chance do lesser desi mortals have ?]
    2. Field tenures:
    No way that can happen with our neighbourhood. The Chinese Army fellow does not get leave for upto 4 years (see PLA English daily or I can provide link)
    3. Transfers: Better still give no family accommodation at all except in say 100 well infrastructured and connected places in India incl. Regtl Centres. Liberal leave and free travel facility for soldiers to ‘home in’ 6+ times a year. So, no disruption in children’s schools, wife’s / spouses job etc. Voting rights of all soldiers and ex servicemen to be allotted for life to Regtl Centres irrespective of origin. See the interest politicians develop in faujis. Solid vote banks.
    4. Pay – Thank you.
    5. Colonial Ceremonials – (No) Thank you.
    6. Outside Learning. Disagree. Ban it. No outsourcing, No pollution. Keep Faujis cloistered vestals to be sacrificed as reqd.
    Understood that Military schools, colleges and training institutions are self sufficient, focussed and excellent. Wolves should not be civilised to urbane street curs. Spartan.
    7. Exit. Sure, opting out policy should be clear. If cannot be spared due to exigencies of service grant double/ triple pay till relieved.
    8. SSC: Must grow up. No knickers. Full service for all. Abs. unfair to push people out at 30/35.
    9. Brand. No way please. Let the customer take it or leave it, the way it is. But tell all from day one so only strongly motivated despite all, buy.
    10,11,12 Thank you agree Sir.
    13. Pragmatic moots Pandora-ing. Should be interesting to watch.

  49. trusty March 15, 2008 at 12:45 pm #

    @PS
    1. Looks good on the outside…thats abt the max one can say abt it. so definite improvements req there.
    2. Never say never. you will only eat your words in future. there is always scope. difficult yes…impossible no. And for God’s sake lets not ape the Chinese!!!!
    3. Minimise transfers…period.
    6. “Keep Faujis cloistered vestals to be sacrificed as reqd.” Funny!! but pretty naive and medieval. My point stands.
    8. Debatable. Many would like to be ” pushed out” (80% of docs according to you) so not unfair.
    9. Image and positioning very imp.

  50. sandeep March 17, 2008 at 8:44 am #

    U see, cribbing is good for health and it costs nothing.
    So ppl do it. Leaving alone NDA ppl, lot of techies and DE’s come in after workin for atleast couple of years . And when their shoes get worn and feet gets blisters while trying to earn even half of what they presently get, they are grateful for what armed forces gives them.

    U see people only open their mouth when their stomachs are full and they know that they can not be sacked, since only benchmark of their performance is to be written only once a year and that too with a subjective benchmarks (which is also mostly managed).
    The pay commission should make it mandatory or rather optional that each officer should leave his uniform including possession of all perks privileges of GoI including accomodation for family and Pay and allowances for 2 years and then he should come back and take premature resignation. And then if he does not take and comes back to army, the army should sort out such individuals.
    Again, only people with stomach full and with no insecurity of the next meal open their mouth the most. (After all they have commission, right:)))

  51. enjoylife March 17, 2008 at 11:50 am #

    wow…mr pragmatic…seem the kinda response u have raked…good scheme…keep it up….and enjoy life…and let other do too!!!

  52. EIDELON March 17, 2008 at 3:33 pm #

    Sujata,
    No post from you for a long time.
    here is a tribute for you all(May not be entirely original)

    HOW THE LORD MADE THE MILITARY WIFE

    The good lord was creating a model for military wives and was into his sixth day overtime when an angel appeared. She said, “Lord, you seem to be having a lot of trouble with this one. What’s wrong with the standard model?”

    The Lord replied, “Have you seen the species on the order? She has to be completely independent, possess the qualities of both father and mother, be perfect hostess to four or forty at an hour’s notice, run on black coffee, handle every emergency imaginable without a manual, be able to carry on cheerfully even if she is pregnant and suffering
    from flu, and she must be willing to move to a new location twenty times in 30 yrs. And oh she must have six pairs of hands.”

    The angel shook her head. “Six pairs of hands? No way.”

    The Lord continued, “Don’t worry, we will make other military wives help her. And we will give her an unusually strong heart so it can swell with pride in her husband’s achievements, sustain the pain of separations, beat soundly when it is overworked and tired, and be
    large enough to say ‘I understand’ when she doesn’t and say ‘I love you’ regardless.”

    “Lord,” said the angel, touching his arm gently, “go to bed and get some rest, you can finish this tomorrow.”

    “I can’t stop now,” said the Lord, ” I am so close to creating something unique. Already this model heals herself when she is sick, can put up six unexpected quests for the weekend, wave goodbye to her husband from a pier, a runway or a depot and understand why it’s
    important that he leaves.”

    The angel circled the model of the military wife, looked at it closely and sighed, “It looks fine, but it’s too soft.”

    “She might look soft,” replied the Lord, “But she has the strength of a lion. You would not believe what she can endure.”

    Finally, the angel bent over and ran her finger across the cheek of the Lord’s creation. “There’s a leak,” she announced. “Something is wrong with the construction. I am not surprised that it has cracked. You are trying to put too much into this model.”

    The Lord appeared offended at the angel’s lack of confidence. “What you see is not a leak,” he said, “It’s a tear.”

    “A tear? What is it there for?” asked the angel.

    The Lord replied, ” It’s for joy, sadness, pain, disappointment, loneliness, pride and a dedication to all the values that she and her husband hold dear.”

    “You are a genius,” exclaimed the angel.

    The Lord looked puzzled and replied, “I didn’t put it there

  53. Pragmatic March 17, 2008 at 7:14 pm #

    He is well paid that is well satisfied. -William Shakespeare

  54. Veeru March 17, 2008 at 8:50 pm #

    @ PS/ EIDELON/ Pragmatic

    Excellent! The glorious past has to be brought back. I still remember the words of my first CO on joining my unit after commissioning – “Never treat ‘fauj’ like a ‘naukri.’ It is a way of life!

    Blogs like this are trying to restore the glory and pride of the Armed Forces by highlighting the weak links. I am sure this blog is going to shape the brains of tomorrow into lateral and progressive thinking.

    ‘Woh soone ke chidya wapis aayegi – Insha Allah!’

  55. jeyes March 17, 2008 at 11:17 pm #

    Dear SUJATA,kaangeya ,EIDELON and all others who are writng in this website on variuos topics.Kindly realise you are dealing with Pragmatic,who appears to be a super human being ,super genious,who has wide knowledge of defence affairs of the country ,who knows inside out what armed forces are and how armed forces should conduct themselves,how the generals should conduct themselves ,what their pay scales should be, all under his able leadership,he may be ”Defence minister ”in the waiting like we have a few prime ministers in the waiting,making all tall claims to woo the voters,you are just wasting your time in asking him questions which he is not capable of answering? you must understand the guy when he counter questions you instead of replying? Please let him say whatever he wants to say nothing is going to happen till he takes over defence minister since he is still in the waiting list not cleared for promotion to that rank as yet?Till then he can neither reduce defence budget nor cut ur pay nor he can give u a single paisa extra nor he is giving anything from his pocket? God bless most prgamatic the future of INDIA ,JAI HIND

  56. hardtalker March 18, 2008 at 12:21 am #

    ya ya…whip him….whip Pragmatic..how dareth he…a mere mortal… and Prime Minister!…….he talks much too far for PM…..glumbums become PMs…the brains become Defence Minstaaaar…..nd u aint no fool eh Pragmatic??…..but whipping ul get either way.

  57. hardtalker March 18, 2008 at 12:24 am #

    someone got a ticket to any fool’s paradise?…..give it to Veeru please..

  58. sandy March 18, 2008 at 7:45 am #

    I walked aaway from service couple of years back, on some whim. I struggled with release (not PMR). Thought of such corporate style and what not.
    Today, I realise what I lost. I pity these ppl who like children are threatening some sort of things if the sixth pay comm does not deliver. Or something like best and brightest not joining, etc,etc.
    First please enjoy ur service. You will never get something like this in civvy street.
    Secondly, best and brightest atleast frm academic field never as such used to join armed forces before also. And even if 5 % did out of some reason, then they created merry hell around them. And more so in todays world, when exposure and media coverage is so relentless and unforgiving.
    I hope I make sense to some.

  59. Veeru March 18, 2008 at 9:46 pm #

    @ hardtalker

    Thanks! When is the award ceremony please?

    Please do accept the reality. Armed Forces across the world is a profession that is meant for mediocre ( I am being optimistic) and thus attracts the mediocre. You do not require bright sparks to follow orders (incidentally that is what everyone from Gen to Sepoy does, except some stupid order that is internal like ‘everyone to walk with hands down on all Mondays’ – kidding!).

    Since this fact is not advertised, some intellectuals join and subsequently realise that they have got into a booby trap and get frustrated. ‘Sab kismat ka khel hai.’

    Every organisation has 5% place for intellectuals (unfortunately they get wasted in Armed Forces). 30% are mediocre and rest are below average.

    Minus the 5%, if you compare the rest, the Armed Forces folks are much better off.

    Yes, there are problems! Idea is how to overcome them. I may have lost..you may have lost..Let us ensure that the future generations do not lose out.

  60. raajiv March 18, 2008 at 10:08 pm #

    hey everybody, me retired from teh army in 2007 and am glad to say that i am earning quite well(six times more of what i used to earn) and having a much better life. So Mr Santosh please eat your words. For ur info most of teh officers who join the army are usually school toppers or excellent sportsmen or people who have left teh IITs to serve teh nation.And if they r allowed to quit the forces as per their will ass holes like u would be begging on teh road……… so please stuff ur ideas in ur a** and have some respect for teh people who leave their families and teh comfort of their dilapitated homes (if they get it) to protect ungrateful donkeys like u………they surely deserve much more than what they r getting now………… more money more respect

  61. PeterGr8st March 18, 2008 at 10:46 pm #

    Aare’ man, what happened to the pay hike ???

  62. sandy March 19, 2008 at 4:50 am #

    @Pragmatic,
    How abt blocking this Raajiv and remvoig his post.
    As such it is clear that he was a SSB mistake.
    The person who can talk in this manner abt his fellow ppl, was as such a misfit in atleast the army.

  63. ANOTHERR March 20, 2008 at 11:47 am #

    intake??
    My regiment had 22 officers in 1993. and today it operates with 12. 12 doing the task of 22. its the same with most regiments. and btw we are deployed in hard counter insurgency ops in j&k. and have lost 1 officer and 6 Other ranks already. Why pay at all.. more…how about reservation in Army. for joining, Reservation for making it to generals rank… we should have the chiefs post also reserved for SC/ST or something like that. Further more. why do we need weapons…we can fight with our hands..we have so many…makes ideal gun fodder.

    go on
    great going

  64. Pragmatic March 20, 2008 at 12:55 pm #

    @Sandy:

    We will let this one stay, although it is borderline and a tad embarrassing. If it crosses the limit of decency henceforth, I promise to delete his comments.

  65. Veeru March 20, 2008 at 9:42 pm #

    @ Pragmitic

    Please do not delete raajiv’s post. Let the whole world know what kind of toppers/ potential IITians join the Armed Forces. Let the future generation be aware about the IQ/ Knowledge level required to become an officer in the Armed Forces.

    raajiv is a typical example of the rot in the Armed Forces…..hang him first and then we will give him a trial! He could not produce any facts to counter the arguments. He choose the Army style…you bloody will.. and that’s an order!

    The silver lining is that he like a rat has ditched the ship. There are many who believe – ‘be the change that you want see’

  66. Chou March 21, 2008 at 1:25 pm #

    Dear Friends,
    There is lot of honour to be able to serve your country, its a feeling you cherish everyday of your life, even through all the hardships you have mentioned above.

    For some the grapes have turned sour, for others their materialistic demands have taken over their feeling for the country, others are competing with civil counterparts- maybe classmates.But they are forgetting nobody forced them to join the armed forces- they volunteered.

    I do thank your site for putting up valiant fight for a good cause.

    As for me I still haven’t lost faith in my country

    Ciao.

  67. Pragmatic March 21, 2008 at 1:39 pm #

    @Chou:

    If someone volunteered to join the services, why can’t he volunteer to opt out then?

  68. Chou March 21, 2008 at 2:08 pm #

    Dear Pragmatic,

    Firstly, when you volunteer to serve your country you know its not a 9 to 5 job.

    Secondly, later, if at any point of time you feel you should not serve your country, its a serious issue.

    Now the answer to your question :

    Yes he can, but there are some formalities and processes involved which do take some time because there some security issues involved.

    Short Service commissions are there which caters for this.

    You sounded pretty intelligent this quetion is not upto your standard.

    Ciao.

  69. Pragmatic March 21, 2008 at 2:27 pm #

    @Chou:
    Yes he can, but there are some formalities and processes involved which do take some time because there some security issues involved.
    Oh really, that is why only 300 odd applications out of 800 plus for premature retirements and resignations were approved by the Army in 2006 and 2007.
    Do check your facts. The SS is also for 10+4 years now. Let me also tell you that no service officer has signed any bond (as believed by many for 20 years, which is pensionable service) with the government. It is the blatant misuse of the discretionary powers vested in the service HQ. You might also be surprised to know that a similar stop-release statement has to be signed by the US President himself and that includes additional bonus.
    You sounded pretty intelligent this quetion is not upto your standard.
    I do not know about my intelligence and standards, but based on your reply, I am having some doubts about your knowledge of systems and processes.

  70. trusty March 21, 2008 at 3:09 pm #

    @veeru
    Let the future generation be aware about the IQ/ Knowledge level required to become an officer in the Armed Forces.

    The IQ level required to become an officer in the Armed forces cannot be determined from a blogpost. Please direct personal vendettas correctly and not against an entire community

  71. Chou March 21, 2008 at 4:20 pm #

    Dear Pragmatic,

    I over rated you.

    ciao

  72. hardtalker March 21, 2008 at 5:51 pm #

    boy….me for one am glad this Raajiv guy has retired!…good riddance to bad rubbish..he may earn a 6-digit sal,but certainly looks like thats all he ever earns.
    watch this one Pragmatic…someone spared him the boot looooong back…and it shows.

    And I agree with my defence ministaar saab …that “formalities and processes” involved in releasing officers who volunteer to do so, are rubbish. The shortages are so much,add to it the insufficient intake now…the govt is shitting bricks boys. They cant let anyone go now…applications on extreme compassionate grounds are also being rejected.
    Its undoubtedly a dictatorial misuse of powers.

  73. raajiv March 21, 2008 at 8:10 pm #

    Hi guys, thanks for all those good words……….. and Mr veeru hats off to u…….. u seem to have very good IQ…….. and i had to leave teh army not because i did not want to serve the country anymore but just because of teh guy who shot at my leg b4 i shot him dead………….

  74. Veeru March 21, 2008 at 9:01 pm #

    @ trusty

    I am part of your fraternity so I know what I am talking about. “You joker, Who gave you the idea that you can think”. This is what my seniors told me at NDA. Unfortunately the statement still holds good.

    @ raajiv

    Thanks for a decent post.

    Please do realise that this is not a ‘Bar’ at Officers Mess/ Institute where you can pour out your heart after a couple of drinks. The blog is at ‘World Wide Web’. The entire world can access this blog spot. One has to be careful before making a statement, particularly when one is revealing that he has an Armed Forces background.

    No doubt that you were committed till your last day in service. As a matter of fact I feel that Armed Forces Personnel must get a recognition of sorts for delivering even when the odds outweighs the even.

    The idea is to bring back the glory of the Armed Forces!

  75. trusty March 22, 2008 at 3:06 pm #

    @veeru
    You joker, Who gave you the idea that you can think”. This is what my seniors told me at NDA
    its a pity that you took NDA boisterousness as your way of life. Not true for a large majority though.

  76. AARVEE March 22, 2008 at 3:52 pm #

    Hi all,
    I’m new to this blog, but i would like to contribute my 10 paisa worth..

    1. pragmatic, the hard truth is that the service HQs are resorting to drastic measures not to leave officers because of an acute officer shortage in the services. the simple reason being that a pilot in the IAF earns around 20-40,000 Rs (gross take home salary) whereas, if he leaves service the civil airlines are waiting with open arms to pay him 10 times that.
    2. It is true that no bond has been signed, but if the floodgates are opened today, within a year there would be no one left to fly in the IAF.
    3. It is sad that when a Mig 21 crashes, or a movie (Rang de Basanti) comes out, the populace is full of sympathy for the poor fighter pilot, which evaporates like the morning dew when a pay hike is proposed.
    4. Maybe the govt is taking inspiration from the USAF which faced a similar problem 30 years back.They just held out for a couple of years until the airline industry boom receeded and salaries became comparable. fortunately for them they always had a convenient war or two to motivate young people to join.
    5. Maybe thats the problem with us.. nothing a good war cannot solve, eh?

  77. asdf March 22, 2008 at 7:38 pm #

    some body said
    if you love somebody just set it free.
    if it comes back to you it is yours else it never belonged to you.

    it is foolishnes of military that it is not allowing the officers to leaves just open the floodgates and you will see no body will come out.

  78. Veeru March 22, 2008 at 8:51 pm #

    @ trusty

    Think rationally; not emotionally. You will get the wisdom of my quote.

    One of my course mate left within 2 years of commissioning. His frustration was that- ‘what the hell! It is a post office job that we are doing. The lowest level transmits and the report flows to the highest level, similarly the highest level transmits and it flows to the lowest level.’

    The above not withstanding, I still feel that soldiering is one of the finest profession. It requires a bit….urrr…a lot of fine tuning.

    Let us please put an end to this divergent topic.

  79. EIDELON March 22, 2008 at 10:54 pm #

    ASDF or is it asdf

    The catch phrase is”If you love somebody”
    Friend who told who that somebody loves somebody here.
    It is a professional Army if you want love please go to the”Film Industry”.

    Veeru

    It is very easy to blame the seniors when you are a junior. Do you know that the Colonels blame the youngsters and the seniors and the seniors blame the juniors for the rot in the Army.
    You can either be a postman or you can be the harbinger of welcome change. It is possible but most of us blame the seniors,juniors,babus,civilians or some rue even the ladies coming to the dining hall(Little realising that as we have women officers, ladies coming to the bar/dining hall/dinner nights is not an anathema.
    Soldiering will always remain a Noble Profession’despite of the problems in the Army/Views of all and sundry.
    JAI HIND

    Dr Rao
    (Wrong Topic but does’nt matter, we are not very fussy here)
    Have you ever attended an Air Force/ Navy Dinner Night?

  80. preet March 22, 2008 at 11:01 pm #

    The Indian army has no shortage of officers, its just that many are rejected during the interview. The lot who are taken are not exceptions but just palin lucky.
    I am an army wife and I know what is good and bad in the army. Separations, frequent transfers and lastly salary is the cause for this.
    My husband once moved 3 times in a year ( it was’nt a punishment) why does’nt the army se to all this. So much of money is wasted by moving like this.
    There is a lot of money wasted in the army on unessary things, cut that down.When there is no war what do you think the officers do, buttering the seniors, partying and entertaining senior officers. tha jawans push prams, cook and Ihave even seen them washing and drying womens clothes.

  81. veeresh March 23, 2008 at 10:47 am #

    I had a senior who served in MES. He took premature in 03, becuase he could not stand upto the corruption. this guy reached upto the very highest level. But there was nothing. The policy is ” Khao khujao, batti bhujao”.

  82. Concerned March 23, 2008 at 12:31 pm #

    Hi all, The Services (read senior officers )have taken upon their tiny shoulders all the responsibility of defending the Country and accordingly are holding back officers who wish to leave. Permanent commision is being understood as being ‘ permanently commissioned’. It is plain selfishness of the two stars and above ranked officers, who are enjoying all the perks and cannot tolerate youngsters enjoying more than them; it is pure jealousy and lack of leadership/ foresightedness. If they had some foresightedness, they would have gone with the government’s policies and let people go as per govt rules. And Services would have been on a better ground to seek higher pay/ perks from the pay commission. Lets hope some sense dawns upon our senior officers and they get to see beyond their own benefits and care for the Service/ subordinates.

  83. meena March 24, 2008 at 10:30 am #

    hi
    new to this blog.
    Just wish to know how many civilians are opting out of service to join the private sector? Has any IAS or a central allied officer volunteered to leave despite whatever pittance ( as Claimed) he draws?. Should that answer the need for faujis desperation to quit>

  84. Vivek March 24, 2008 at 11:55 am #

    meena,

    Start reading this website:
    http://www.whispersinthecorridors.com/index_home.html

    Every other day, some IAS/IRS officer or the other quits.

  85. meena March 25, 2008 at 8:42 am #

    dear vivek
    I went through the site. The irony with the army officers is that they cannot leave till a decision to let them go is taken. The civilians can put up their papers and walk off. Am I right.

  86. Vivek March 25, 2008 at 9:46 am #

    No govt employee can just walk off. There are clearances to be obtained for civilians also. It is just that civilian govt organizations are not as strict as the military ones when it comes to letting go.

    And yet, I have heard (no proof, so don’t ask for it) that the DOPT is holding the resignations of more than 100 IAS officers on instruction from PMO that they should be asked to wait for the pay commission report. Not sure what these officers would do now. The hike is a pittance.

  87. PS March 25, 2008 at 10:00 am #

    [1] VI PC, Time Caste..
    Appears decided that a Sergeant / Colonel / General who retired 2 years ago will get half the pension of a S/C/G who retires next month. Any views gentlemen ?

    [2] Remedy:
    Perhaps oldies could be asked to do a token rejoin to get the OROP ? There was a precedent of sorts – like the ‘7 Pillars of Wisdom’ gent. Only he joined the RAF after MI in the Army, then the Armoured Corps and then again the RAF. [ Risaldar Major Hamir Singh, Poona Horse arrested Lawrence in Arabia taking him to be a German spy. L. was then traveling in a flashy staff car. The Hindustani / English altercation which then occurred, gave L a marked antipathy to the IA. ] As well known, L. was later killed in a motorcycle accident. Kismet – Staff car to M/c.

    [3] Another S/C to M/c Story:
    By the way a much respected retd. Navy Chief many years ago, bought a scooter – all he could afford. (Was not appointed Governor or Ambassador. Outspoken.. )

    [4] Post retirement Benefits, small print:
    Heard that FM Sam Manekshaw got a pay/pension of about Rs 1275/ when leaving service. Was not apparently, given a pension increment as some Babu caught on that a Field Marshal is not a retd officer so should get his dues from Golibar Maidan, Pune not Draupadi Ghat, Allahabad.
    [ Trivially, Tumhara kya banega kaliya ? ]

  88. meena March 25, 2008 at 11:49 am #

    when do you think the detailed report will be officially out? The guess work has left so many wanting to know more details

  89. Praveen March 25, 2008 at 6:02 pm #

    The pay commission full report can be downloaded here http://india.gov.in/govt/paycommission.php

    The pay hike is a joke for the Armed Forces (see page 97 onwards of the report).

  90. trusty March 25, 2008 at 8:05 pm #

    The pay commission hike is paltry to put it mildly. As some one put it succintly – ” we were getting peanuts earlier, now we are getting two peanuts”.
    A very broad overview with little effort to address core issues has caused the commission to “double” almost all allowances. These allowances were as little as 100/- or 200/- so “doubling” has little effect.
    even for the civillians i dont think it has much to offer. May be the Govt will make brownie points with the employees by marginally increasing the scales after considering thier protests (which will surely come).
    pragmatic had forecasted a rather mild pay commission but i think they have outdone themselves!!!!

  91. Mavv March 26, 2008 at 2:29 pm #

    The 6CPC report is a mild and gentle way of informing all Govt employees & specially armed forces that “They are not required anymore and should quietly leave and look for better employments. It will be very nice to see as to how the Govt copes with Exodus from the Armed Forces as the worst affected are the middle rung and these are the ones who are leaving.
    All the Best

  92. zucker March 26, 2008 at 7:37 pm #

    Great hike of 40 % !!! If the BP + DP + DA is actually totalled up, the new payscale adds about a 1000 to it. I dont understand why the Pay commission took two years to come to that figure. I’m sure they would have been paid zillions to carry out the exercise…..Plus all the fringe benefits of being pampered where ever they would have gone to (free of cost) in the name of study the conditions of personnel.
    Guess the Govt could just abolish the Pay Commission and keep merging the DA with BP whenever the DA becomes 100%. Also maybe add a small hike at that time.
    Atleast you could save people of this eyewash of an exercise and a lot of frivolous expenditure on a bumch of useless PC members.

  93. shivaji choudhury March 27, 2008 at 12:30 pm #

    kindly see my view in
    http://www.salaryfunda.blogspot.com

  94. Anusha March 27, 2008 at 2:31 pm #

    Accidentally I happened to read the comments. Feels great to know that like me there are many who care for men in Uniform. Let’s further carry on this discussion and help them out? A civilian plead for our army to corrupt Indian government…..

  95. ravi March 27, 2008 at 10:19 pm #

    Service personnel (officers and PBORs) are leaving the forces for better opportunities in the corporate world. I would like to ask those ‘anti the armed forces demands’ on this blog: Are there any from the civy street who having earned in the coorporate world, who would want to now serve the nation and join the armed forces or for that matter any of the paramilitary services???. A policy decision should be taken to allow such people and permit lateral entry from civy to armed forces. I wonder how many of these —-on this blog would join.

  96. ken March 28, 2008 at 6:59 am #

    @RAVI The biggest Blogger known as ”Highly Pragmatic” will be the LAST one to join Defence services even if it is made ”Compulsory”for every citizen,[Thanks to 6th pay commission] when compelled to do so ,when he finds there is no way out ! This highly pragmatic has expressed his desire to become ”Prime Minister” he is not happy being ”Defence Minster”,how do you expect him to join Defence Services? What use such people will be to the defence services or the nation ,they are fit only for civvy life!”Taste of the pudding is in its eating”. Come Pragmatic join Defence Services ,better late than never,and have the taste of how life is in your most favourite subject,without that your comments carry no meaning however ill you may think about Top Brass ,your favourite subject is Army To Brass! God Bless such people who have started hate compaign( read pragmatic ) against Armed Forces,and who think they can prevail upon pay commission to give pay scales as per their wishes and not what Armed Forces deserve !

  97. Pragmatic March 28, 2008 at 8:05 am #

    @Ken:

    Place me on a Figure 22 target on the range, if you will. Pragmatic for target practice!
    who think they can prevail upon pay commission to give pay scales as per their wishes and not what Armed Forces deserve!
    Really! Didn’t know that this blog exercised more power over the SCPC than the three chiefs and the Raksha Mantri combined. That’s quite a compliment. Many thanks!

  98. ken March 28, 2008 at 8:26 am #

    @ PRAGMATIC ”There are many commenters on this blog who assume that this blogger is running a campaign to stall a much-deserved raise for the service officers from the Sixth Pay Commission………” This is only your wishful thinking,no other blogger has said anything what you have been saying,this blog starts with the above paragraph .Kindly be reconciled with what i have said it is true,Dont lose your shirt ,these are your words and no one elses ! For shooting practice we dont need pragmatic people we dont do that,take it easy ,have some fesh air it will be good for your health and thinking .Can you explain how you intend to reduce Defence Budegt? You appear to be all in one PM/FM/DM.God bless you and your thinking .Elections are very near which party is going to project as their ”Prime Ministrial” candidate? Once again please be cool and calm and lose your temper and call your self a target for practice,it shows how arrogant a person you are,though you call yorself PRAGMATIC !

  99. pankaj March 28, 2008 at 8:33 am #

    If Basic compensation structure is not judicious, certainly anything over and above that as Military Service Pay would not reflect the true nature of working requirement and environment of Armed Forces.

    I am sure age profile of those Jawans and Officers who lay down their life in the line of duty would reflect a disturbing trend( as a percentage to total no of jawans/officers in that age group)

    By giving paltry increase of Rs 19909 crores in respect of Armed Forces , SCPC has dealt a severe blow to the morale of jawans/officers upto PB3 pay band.Although I believe that PB4 are also not give what is proper and just.

  100. pankaj March 28, 2008 at 8:36 am #

    oops 1990 crores for all armed forces. (sorry for typo

  101. Pragmatic March 28, 2008 at 8:40 am #

    @Ken:
    I am not the one to lose my shirt or trousers or what have you. You pass snide and supercilious remarks about me personally and not about my views and I can’t even use some wit! Come on, that’s not fair. I do not intend responding to any further comments targeted at me personally.

  102. ken March 28, 2008 at 11:53 am #

    @Pragmatic, it is not difficult to own a website or to start a blog but what you write as a webmaster of your own website does matter a lot that too when you resort to writing on such a sensitive matter as Defence of the country/Defence budget/defence services in general and defence officers in particular / their life and their pay scales.It is already clear from an earlier bolg that you have no idea how to reduce Defence Budget though you prophes that it should be reduced ? It is you who has started the so called snide and supercilious remarks against the Defence forces/defence officers not me .Any way thanks for expressing your views good or bad in your website concerning defence services.If you have anything against the defence services and you feel something can be done to reduce the defence budget or their pay and pension,about which you are more concerned than any one else in the country, kindly write you thesis and forward it to Prime minister,but dont ridicule defence service or write ill of Army Top Brass.

  103. Pragmatic March 28, 2008 at 1:00 pm #

    @Ken:
    What are you arriving it? That I should close the blog. We live in a democracy and the armed forces are not above criticism. In your comments, you haven’t countered my views at all. These personal attacks will not help at all.

    If you don’t like the message, don’t shoot the messenger.

  104. ken March 28, 2008 at 2:03 pm #

    @pragmatic if you are living in a democracy i am also living in the same democracy,i am not a Pakistani or Chinese,there is a difference in criticsm and ridiculing and talking ill of armed forces in general and officers in particular,and that is what you have been doing all along.Who is asking to stop your blog? Dont stop it is good entertainment for you.I have surely countered you but you have not replied instead you chose not to reply! I clearly asked you how will you reduce Defence Budget? What reply you have for that? It is you who is saying you won’t respond to my comments since you feel it is personal attacks whereas i am only expressing my views just like you are expressing your views ! But surely what you write is full of arrogance and with a touch of some vindictiveness against Armed Forces /Defence Officers .So are you above criticism just because you own this website?

  105. Pragmatic March 28, 2008 at 4:03 pm #

    @ken:
    I clearly asked you how will you reduce Defence Budget? What reply you have for that?
    I have never asked for a carte blanche reduction in defence budget. That’s why I haven’t answer your specific question.
    The subject of defence expenditure is rather nuanced. More capital expenditure, greater organisational efficiencies and more money spent on modernisation is what the military needs. Nitin and Sushant have done an op-ed in the Mint on Monday on the subject of capital expenditure, modernisation, LTIPP, outlays and outcomes.
    There are many posts dealing with the subject in the archives. Maybe it will help if you’d delve there. About the personal attacks that you make on me, I have no comments to offer.

  106. ken March 28, 2008 at 4:23 pm #

    @PRAGMATIC @I am sorry to say that the way you write here on the subject is all vague and it wont serve any pupose whatso ever .However , i say again if you have anything concrete in you mind,which will benefit Defence Services then instead of writing here send your expert views to Prime Minister and President of India for their perusal and implemenataion if found practical, may be nation will be benefitted from your views.Whatever you are writng here may not be read/viewed by those who matter ! There is no personal attacks on you at all earlier or now.

  107. Parida March 28, 2008 at 4:28 pm #

    Defence services which work in the 24*7 Environment and the main thing is in all terrain conditions,owes the sympathy of all the citizens of our country.I like to emphasis it is not the Officers only who owes the credit but simultaneously our jawans also lie their life for the country. Whenever there is something regard to defence related benefits which is to be shared among the officers and their people then the officers are either the representative or spokesperson.So neither the media gets clear picture nor the citizen get to know about the whereabouts of the PBOR(personnel below officer rank).So it is the prime duty of the citizens as well as Govt. to focus in all these people too while setting any monetary benefits.The pay revision as set in Vth pay commission for PBOR was not matching to any category of civilian employees but in case in officers it was all linked to central civilian bureaucrats,where a rank was abolished and had a Basic pay starting higher than a probationer IAS officer,but nothing to the pocket of PBOR’s .So request to Finance department with allotment of budgets to De fence the Pays & Perks of these low profile people Literally PBOR’s to be taken into account and not left with Bosses of these organizations rather with good analysts of pay commission fixation committee is to be detailed,otherwise in the democratic country it would rather be called discrimination taking place where the officers avail all good opportunities and their people are left over with nothing where all commodities in market has gone up.Law looks all equal in a democratic country where all shoud be justified and enjoy to their joys.
    It is a suggestion not the right.

  108. Pragmatic March 28, 2008 at 5:41 pm #

    @Ken:
    i say again if you have anything concrete in you mind,which will benefit Defence Services then instead of writing here send your expert views to Prime Minister and President of India for their perusal and implemenataion if found practical, may be nation will be benefitted from your views. Whatever you are writng here may not be read/viewed by those who matter!
    Thanks, but no thanks for the suggestion. You may take the direct to the executive [PM, RM, FM, COAS, CAS, CNS] route with your “fully-baked” ideas. I prefer the public awareness route [aka Blogosphere]. In a modern democracy, the executive, judiciary and the parliament have to be answerable to the public.

    @Parida: Very rightly said about the PBOR and their pay.

  109. ken March 28, 2008 at 7:11 pm #

    @PRAGMATIC
    Thanks, but no thanks for the suggestion. You may take the direct to the executive [PM, RM, FM, COAS, CAS, CNS] route with your “fully-baked” ideas. I prefer the public awareness route [aka Blogosphere]. In a modern democracy, the executive, judiciary and the parliament has to answerable to the public.>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>.

    From my side also thanks but no thanks at ALL . You are most democrat proud son of the soil,your public awreness is half backed without any concrete proposals or ideas beating around the bush,who cares for your public awreness ? Do you think all eyes are glued to your ideas from Prime minster onwards looking at your blog .Have you received any worth while comments on your half backed ideas from any dignitaries you to aim to address ? God only can bless stubborn and arrogant people !

  110. Pragmatic March 28, 2008 at 7:29 pm #

    @Ken:

    Did you ever hear of this quote from Benjamin Franklin–
    “Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote!”

  111. ken March 28, 2008 at 7:33 pm #

    @PRAGMATIC SO SORRY,You are supreme in quotes/unquotes,all your blogs are full of quotes,diversionary route? i am not. LOL

  112. Pragmatic March 28, 2008 at 7:48 pm #

    @Ken:
    I was wrong in assuming that you’d grasp the subtext of the quote and understand the broad hints that I dropped via the quote.

  113. ken March 28, 2008 at 8:26 pm #

    @PRAGMATIC, THANKS FOR DELETING ! THANKS ONCE AGAIN FOR YOUR HINTS ,HOPE YOU UNDERSTAND WHAT I SAID BEATING AROUND THE BUSH? THIS IS WHAT IT IS,PLEASE DON’T DLETE IT ,THANKS

  114. ken March 28, 2008 at 8:31 pm #

    @PRAGMATIC I have taken your blogs in right spirit and i have nothing against you personaly,but please dont delete my blogs ,in democracy every one has right to know who says what! THANKS

  115. Pragmatic March 28, 2008 at 8:34 pm #

    @Ken:
    I don’t delete any comments (although I have the right to do so). Many genuine comments do get stuck in Spam control.

    My answer to your comments is in my post:
    http://pragmatic.nationalinterest.in/2008/03/28/liberty-not-conformity/

    Period.

  116. ken March 28, 2008 at 8:41 pm #

    @PRAGMATIC ,sorry to say you have deleted my blog .It was very much here not stuck in spam control. Yes i know you have all the rights and you can excercise it ,no doubt about your rights.Thanks once again

  117. ken March 28, 2008 at 9:00 pm #

    @PRAGMATIC , Thanks no one can cow you down nor any one should have such ideas,once again there is no personal attacks,but if you still think so it is so sad.Parting should always be on happy note not sad one,but passing slurs against any organisation or people at the helms of affairs of any organisation is not correct/good .It leaves bad taste if nothing else.That is what i have said all along.Please refrain from passing such comments. Every one thinks he is supreme,but yes you are supreme if you take it in right spirit.God bless you pragmatic

  118. Kan March 28, 2008 at 9:01 pm #

    @ Ken

    You have it in you! I read…re-read…re-re-read your posts, but couldn’t figure out what has upset you or what fireworks are doing the rounds in your mind.

    By Jove..you have it in you!

  119. ken March 28, 2008 at 9:03 pm #

    @PRAGMATIC Your comments have come simultaneouly as i posted mine just now,kindly read above.Thanks

  120. EIDELON March 28, 2008 at 9:11 pm #

    @ALL

    PRAGMATIC HAS ACHIEVED HIS AIM IF HE HAS GENERATED A DEBATE. WE HAVE TO DISCUSS ABOUT THE HOLY COWS. HOW MUCH YOU FEEL HURT BY THE COMMENTS HERE DEPENDS UPON HOW MUCH YOU LOVE YOUR ORGANISATION BUT MOSTLY IT DEPENDS UPON HOW MUCH IMPORTANCE YOU GIVE TO SOMEBODY’S COMMENTS. I JUST LAUGH AT SOME MATERIAL I FIND FOOLISH AND BE REST ASSURED SO DOES EVERY INTELLIGENT VISITOR. SO ENJOY.( I AM SHOUTING)

  121. ken March 28, 2008 at 9:14 pm #

    good please you enjoy too thanks pragmatic

  122. meena March 29, 2008 at 12:28 pm #

    Contributions to this should be stopped and it be allowed to die a natural death. We do not have the time and energy to manage the but masters. A haryanvi once told his wife that he has won Rs 500 by stating that the cow has 5 legs. But the cow has only 4 legs. How did u win. Oh well i just told them ‘Hongi par main na maanooo”
    What ever u tell ceratin people they will always react like the haryanvi and assume that they have won. Just leave them They dont deserve your time and bile.

  123. ken March 29, 2008 at 7:20 pm #

    @MEENA you are right that is why i call him stubborn and arrogant super-duper ”HIGHLY PRGMATIC”he is wasting his time ,thouh i feel he is unemployed at the moment and he has nothing else to do and is taking solace in these blogs ,through various Quotes to divert the attention of readers /bloggers to pass his time,when he runs short of ideas.His knowledge of Defence Matters is only poor but also theoratical in nature [all figures he quote are easily available in various websites ].Since he is no more youg now he wont be able to join defence services ‘there fore he cannot have the taste of the pudding ,as i said before,and he will never know what hardships Defence Personnel and their families undergo,though SUJATA has brough out all the points but Prgamtiac being a ”big sas” the story of sas bahu carrys on,big sas can never relent,it is below her diginity, she is alwasy Right and Bahu is always Wrong,because he never agrees to any of the bloggers who are right and say correct things .He again resort to his counter comments or counter questions even on those 100% correct Facts from bloggers thus thinking all those bloggers can be cowed down by him.He is grossly mistaken. He has to change his mind set or else he turns psychopathic and we have to arrange for his treatment otherwise country is bound is to lose another brilliant super duper fellow. He even resort to cheating when any blog is not to his tatse by deleting it,a sahmeful act for a blogger and also put comments on Benami names to supplement his own vies/thinking .This type of cheating is not expected from such High profile blogger of his stature.There is nothing in this blog worthwhile and such blogs are bound to die its natural death .

  124. enjoylife April 2, 2008 at 1:30 pm #

    hey…u people here..how many of u (including mr pragmatic) have ur life on the line for sumbody else…for those who have….will also understand the true essence of being in the armed forces….amen

  125. Soft_talker April 2, 2008 at 9:10 pm #

    @ Pragmatic

    Going by the comments, I conclude that the Armed Forces attract the sharpest brains!

  126. afzal md April 3, 2008 at 4:41 pm #

    give us good pay becouse what we do civilean donot do.In army you can ask evry thing but dont aske ur life.

  127. Col(Retd) Sr Vice Chairman IESL Hamirpur April 5, 2008 at 8:02 am #

    MEMORANDUM TO GOVERNMENT OF INDIA :FINANCE MINISTER
    FROM
    INDIAN EX-SERVICES LEAGUE HAMIRPUR (HP)

    Ex-servicemen protest apathy over pension
    Resentment prevails amongst the ex-servicemen in this district over the indifferent attitude adopted by Pay Commission in granting the one rank, one pension to the retired military personnel and negligible increase in the pay structure of PBOR and Officer below the General Ranks. Addressing a big congregation at Indian Ex-Services League Office Hamirpur on 02 Apr 2008. At a rally Chaired by its president Brig (Retd) Dalip Singh, through a resolution expressed anguish. They said mere giving little increase after 10 years wait will no way fulfill their daily needs. Beside knowing the fact that The Armed Forces are the most important part of the country and they should be given the best facilities available in the country beside recommended hike in pay/pension. Recently there were news in the leading newspaper that more than 2000 officers have opted to leave Army. The rigorous process to recruit the officer is very tough and the cream is taken to serve the country. Lakhs of rupees are being spent on their training, but the result is they are frustrated by comparing with their class fellows who were just average, and they are living a much comfortable and more economically sound life than theirs. Result is they are leaving the jobs. Already the trend to join the Armed Forces is less and now due to the handsome pay packages in the private sector has delineated young generations from this profession. Similar situation is there with the Air Force Pilots. The Pvt. Airlines are alluring them with heavy pay packages and result is dearth of the pilots in the Air Force. The persons who remain behind are either frustrated or unwilling workers. This situation will further deteriorate, since this aspect has not been looked into by the Pay Commission.
    i) Comparison with private sector
    ii) Special and hazardous nature of duties The basis for determination of pay scales for Armed Forces Personnel should be comparable with the private sector.
    One Rank One Pension
    1. One Rank One Pension demanded was pending with the Government for all Ex-servicemen. But again has not been accepted only diversify amount has been recommended linking with Fifth CPC granted parity between pre and post 1/1/1986 pensioners and a modified parity between pre and post 1/1/1996 pensioners. Pay commission has specifically tried to give the reference of civilians employees given the dispensation, which is not at all acceptable to Ex-Servicemen and will fight for very legitimate right.

    Retiring Pension for Commissioned Officers
    2. Defence Forces have proposed that officers should be paid pension at the rate of 50% of the maximum of the scale attached to the rank from which they retire. But the Commission has recommended payment of pension at the rate of 50% of the last pay drawn or the average emoluments, whichever is higher, irrespective of the number of qualifying years of service completed (subject to completion of 20 years of qualifying service). Inspite of knowing well the slow promotion in the Defence in comparison with their counter part in civil services no justice has been done. This demand was legitimate but denied by the Pay commission without any justification.

    Commutation of pension
    3. Defence Forces have proposed that the period of restoration should be reduced to 12 years. Similar demand was made by many civilian employees/associations but the same has not been accepted. The period of 15 years therefore, remained unchanged for civilians as well as the Defence Forces.

    Pension for Honorary Ranks
    4. , Havaldars on getting the rank of Honorary Naib Subedar are being considered as the regular promotion and all the benefits will be given where as the case JCOs awarded the Honorary Ranks of Sub and Sub/Major has not been touched.

    Disability Pension awards –Analysis
    5. Pay commission has not given any weight age to the Recommendation given by various agencies with regard to disability pension. Keeping in view the decision given in favor of various Individuals went to the court and got the verdict in their favor, should have been considered by abolishing the requirement of Attributable to Military service or aggravation. There are number of cases where non attributable and non aggravated persons have been granted the disability pension on court orders.

    No Pension to Short service officers/Reservists (left out categories)
    6. Knowing well that even pension to MLA/MPs having elected for 5 years are eligible for highest amount of pension where as Defence personnel having been served for much longer period in difficult conditions have not been considered suitable for pensionary award. No Pension to Short Service Officers send out after completion of 5 to 10 years of service.
    Vital Request
    The future of the country should not be left over the decision/recommendations given by any commission therefore we request the Finance Minister to intervene in issuing orders or notification to meet our demand of one rank, one pension and other recommendations given by our Generals. The defense of the country is an important department and it should be taken as the first priority and 100% weightage should be given which we all Ex-servicemen deserve.
    “One individual may die for an idea; but that idea will, after his death, incarnate itself in a thousand lives. That is how the wheel of evolution moves on and the ideas and dreams of one nation are bequeathed to the next’ ‘As soldiers, you will always have to cherish and live up to the three-ideals of faithfulness, duty and sacrifice. Soldiers who always remain faithful to their nation, who are always prepared to sacrifice their lives, are invincible”. (Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose)

  128. makbool April 6, 2008 at 11:32 pm #

    OUTSOURCE!!!! if we think that the armed forces are a burden on the nation why dont we outsorce? lets out sorce the defence of the nation to a company ( and i am sure you will get a lot of them to grab the contract…) and pay the defence budget to them .. acually we should be able to negotiate a good deal givin the negotiating skills of our babus. and we are fighting no war .. so given the current circumstances we will have to pay a lesser premium.. (what about a no claim bonus for the next year?) hahahaha
    well done mr krishna.. with people like you we dont need an enemy to fight the next war..

  129. makbool April 7, 2008 at 12:40 pm #

    everyone is harping upon the 30% hike in pay. the media is saying that the hike is substantial. has enyone checked out the basic +da+ dp currently and the proposed basic ?? all this talk of increase is bakwaas.

  130. meena April 9, 2008 at 12:23 pm #

    Ask any officer who gets posted to a supposedly peace stn after a tenure away from his family and the stn has no Army public school. He goes from pillar to post trying for admission of the children in some decent school because he like any other senior babu wants his ward to be in a school better than a central school. The babus who have forever lived in one staye and hold nuisance value in any district they get posted to can get the best of the school for their precious children. The fauji can do no good or no harm to the school so he is left stranded. He has not the kind of money to send his kids tp the hostel. What does he do. Will the babus ever appreciate this? No/ Have their wives ever done the running around in their absence. will they appreciate? No ask me. All that we undergo and suffer? Even to come out of the cantt to a bus point is a task. SPk to Army wives living alone. Go and see the houses of the Jawans . Meet the jawans wives. You will know what i mean. It is difficult to get your husband to stay with u because the nation wants him in the borders. But is it difficult to give some financial freedom to the families that they do not have to think before hiring a three wheeler, get the child admitted in a good school. No they can take your life, rather demand it and turn back and say nobody forced u to join the army

  131. Meenu April 11, 2008 at 6:54 pm #

    if the ‘concerned people’ think that Defense service can be compared to that in civil and anybody can do it then why not make it compulsary for everyone for few years. At least the next gen will have some respect for the people who would continue and would refrain from making comparisions.’People’ dont have an idea about what they are talking in their ac rooms. They are probably misled by the disguised happiness on the faces of defense personnel which they have managed as a part of their training, the love for their motherland and acceptance of an outcome of their own sweet decision to serve.

  132. Indian April 12, 2008 at 9:54 am #

    So long any one keeps begging,he will keep getting pea-nuts.More and more ex-servicemen must win elections-form your own party-get into the parliament-but then do not forget the services.This is your country as much as of any one else.You have sacrificed so much.Settle the system from within.You are much better than the criminals who are today`s law makers.Country needs you once again.

  133. manmanman April 14, 2008 at 10:09 pm #

    Mr Pragmatic,
    Just spend a day in the Siachin glacier with Shelling all around and your ass frozen at -25 deg centigrade and I am sure you will have different ideas by the evening, believe me. just use your nut before starting such a stupid blog like this. If some Jawan comes to know of your ID even God wouldn’t save you.

  134. gopi April 15, 2008 at 10:54 pm #

    there were pay panel for 4th and 5th pay commissions but there is no output and in similar lines this time also.

  135. sulekha bis April 22, 2008 at 3:13 pm #

    sir,
    i am a widow pensioner,my husband retired on 31-12-1984.on 01-01-1996 my basic family pension was 1650/-,and now i am geting 3639+100(1650+825×47%+100(medical),can you tell me what is my pension after 6th pay commission.
    sulekha

  136. anoop May 1, 2008 at 2:16 pm #

    are u related anyway with defence forces. I am sure ur not.u may consider sending ur son to the defence forces and sure u will change ur attitude

  137. sumit May 2, 2008 at 11:09 pm #

    hey people
    get all the updates related to sixth pay commission in general and military in particular on this site:
    http://sixthpaycommission.blog.co.in/

  138. Soldier48 May 3, 2008 at 10:27 pm #

    I think that the problems are multifaceted :
    (a) Very poor military leadership. We have senior officers these days and no military leaders.
    (b) They care only for their perks and never stand up for their juniors.
    (c)It is so easy for the babus to divide and rule the fauji lot.
    (d) The IAS is supreme. Simple.
    (e) India (corporate)shining has added fuel to the fire.
    (f) Today most senior officers are corrupt to the core. After half a century of Independence, we are still buying stuff from abroad.But most of the times we do not even know what to buy or how to manage the defence contracts, we bow to the suppliers and why? !!!! See the way all the Russian contracts ( Mig-29K, Su-30, Gorshkov, Mig-29B, Tanks, Submarine, Ships and what have you contracts) or even the Hawk contracts are progressing.
    (h) Living conditions like messes/officers qtrs are still the same.
    (i) Lets face it. The forces are going to the dogs.

    PS: I have just put in my papers

  139. ambekar s a May 14, 2008 at 6:30 pm #

    Just now my basic is 7025 & pay scale is 5500 -175-9000. My icrement is in the month of Agust.I am prt in kv complited my 21 years.

  140. kalasi (indian Naval Sailor) May 15, 2008 at 12:55 am #

    Life expectancy of a sailor

    retired after 15 yrs live up to 75+

    retire after 20 yrs live up to 70 or less

    retire after 25 yrs live up to 60 or less

    retire after 28 yrs live up to 50 or less

    retire after hon. commission sailors is not expected to collect his first pension

    therefore retire earlier to avail superior benefits from lord.

  141. kalasi (indian Naval Sailor) May 15, 2008 at 1:17 am #

    IAS (Indian Arrogant Service) chaps will use their superior I.Q. to prove that men in uniform are sleeping on bed of roses i.e. endless Qs of personal servants, free airlifts, year around parties, five star messes etc, etc.

    Even they mention that these guys are not even graduates (barring CDS), still start at the same point when begin their career!

    some smart a** suggested restructuring the force, well, good idea, make all the dick and harry (s), two star with in 17 years. It would solve the problems.

    This all shows how myopic these guys are, i suggest these guys to spare three days, to cure myopic vision,i.e. for a day at sea during monsoon; spend a day above 5000 meters during the month of January; a day at any apron of IAF station situated in rajasthan.

    i am sure they will love it and of course they will also agree that Roses have thorns too!

    Jai Hind

  142. kalasi (indian Naval Sailor) May 15, 2008 at 1:47 am #

    readers please don’t let this topic to die follow the link please
    http://pragmatic.nationalinterest.in/2008/03/21/pay-commission-bonanza-for-military/

  143. colonel krishan yadava (retd) May 31, 2008 at 7:29 pm #

    i would like to add that –>
    With the Sixth Pay Commission ignoring their legitimate demands for a pay hike commensurating with their difficult service conditions and nomadic life style, the armed forces personnel are the most demoralized lot because they do not know whom to approach for redressal of their grievances. They are in this situation because ignoring the prevalent environment in the country, the armed forces have remained apolitical and most of them do not even vote. Without going into detailed justification because neither the leadership nor the people of our beloved country have time to read about the plight of its brave soldiers, it is humbly requested that in case our government does not have the will or the finances for its armed forces personnel, the government should kindly:-

    (a) Accept the resignation of the armed forces personnel who want to pursue another better and more dignified career. All talk about the youth joining the armed forces for honour etc is hogwash because no one can continue serving in an organization which has lost its relevance and where there are NO avenues of promotions or growth.

    (b) Allow the armed forces personnel to have an Association on the same lines as that of the I.A.S & the I.P.S and the other Police Organizations. It is a moot point that if one uniformed force is permitted to have an association why deny it to the other. We must never forget that, “ the product of a system will never question/ go against the system”, hence no senior Defence Officer will ever project the true picture of the problems being faced by the middle and the lower ranking armed forces personnel to our government.

    (c) Treat us with dignity like our civilian counterparts and not like pariahs.

  144. Munna Bhai June 1, 2008 at 9:49 pm #

    @ colonel krishan yadava (retd)

    Please address all these issues to the top brass during your next dharna at India Gate!

    Regards

    Munna

  145. phoollan devi June 8, 2008 at 7:59 am #

    faujiyon ne apna adhikar manga to duniya ko mirchi kyon lagi

  146. shivaji choudhury June 27, 2008 at 3:08 pm #

    •LAW OF SALARY
    SALARY IS INVERSERLY PROPOTIONAL TO RESPONSIBILITY TOWARDS NATION .

    A SOLDER -SOLDER HAVE THE GREATEST RESPONSIBILITY TOWARDS NATION .HIS SERVICE CONDITIONS ARE TOUGHEST.HIS SALARY IS LOWEST IN INDIA.HE WILL RETIRE AT AGE OF 35 YEARS WHEN HIS RESPONSIBILITY TOWARDS HIS FAMILY IS HIGHEST.

    A TEACHER- THE RESPONSIBILITY OF TEACHERS TO BUILD FUTURE OF INDIA. HIS RESPONSIBILITY IS VERY HIGH.NEVERTH THEIR SALARIES ARE VERY LOW.

    SOFTWARE ENGINEER– MOST OF OUR SOFTWARE ENGINEERS ARE SOLVING THE PROLEMS OF USA OR EUROPE.THEIR RESPONSIBILITY TOWORDS NATION IS RELATIVELY LOW.THEIR SALARIES ARE HIGH.

    SOAP AND SHAMPO- A PERSON WITH B.TECH FROM IIT AND MBA FROM IIM ,JOINED SOAP AND SHAMPO MULTINATIONAL FIRM BECAUSE HE IS AN INTELLENT PERSON.HIS RESPONSIBILITY TOWARDS NATION IS VERY LOW.HIS SALARY IS VERY HIGH.

    SOFT AND HARD DRINK- THOSE WHO ARE WORKING IN SOFT OR DRINK FIRMS ,THEIR SALARIES ARE HIGHEST.SOFT OR HARD DRINKS DO NOT HAVE ANY HEALTH VALUE. THEIR RESPONSIBILITY TOWARDS THE NATION IS LOWEST .

  147. Harwant Sing June 27, 2008 at 4:52 pm #

    You have left MPs and IAS who have all the authority in the world and NO (repeat NO) responsibility yet they get astronomical perks and pay . Are they not responsible for law and order in the country ? Can they answer the dismal level of governance in general and NO (NO) governance in may states ? With their dismal performance whyn should they vbe paid at all? Yet 6th Pay Commission has give hefty pay to the IAS (Immensely Arrogant Service ).

  148. PS June 27, 2008 at 7:54 pm #

    @Munna Bhai
    Breaking news: Top ex_brass conducting tac withdrawal: No longer interested in India Gate Basmati Rice.
    @phoollan devi
    twada jawab nahin behenji. amar raho. thank you.

  149. Blake June 27, 2008 at 11:00 pm #

    @ PS
    you are getting weirder & weirdier!!

  150. Mahatma June 27, 2008 at 11:02 pm #

    @PS

    Twada is masle par ki jawab hai

    UPA’s death blow to the morale of Indian Military-II

    Thu, 26 Jun, 2008 , 03:49 PM
    .
    The Officers and Men in the Armed Forces of India today are in a sad state and mood of general disappointment, depression and dissatisfaction, which is having an adverse impact on their morale.
    I have just finished reading an article by Major General E.D’ Souza, PVSM which was published in the June 2008 issue of Freedom First The Liberal Position under the title ‘Whatever For? They Are Only Doing Their Duty’. In Post-Independent India we seem to be more concerned with corrupt and unscrupulous politicians and their innumerable concubines! The nation never tries to recall or remember the lives and achievements of outstanding Officers and Men from the Armed Forces of India who have distinguished themselves in selfless national service.

    Before I deal with the substantive issues Major General E.D’Souza has raised relating to the recommendations of the Sixth Pay Commission relating to the Armed Forces as a whole, I would like to refer to the distinguished life and achievements of Major General E. D’Souza as an Army Officer from 1942 till 1977. Born in 1921, he graduated in Science from St.Xaviers College, Bombay in 1941. He joined the Army in 1942 and was commissioned from the Indian Military Academy in 1943 and posted to the Mahratta Light Infantry. His Army Unit fought in the Italian Campaign from May 1944 to September 1945 in all the major battles after the fall of MONTE CASSINO to the crossing of the PO. Later he moved with his Unit to Japan as part of Brigadier Thimayya’s 268 Indian Infantry Brigade of the British Commonwealth Occupation Forces from February 1946 to September 1947. After becoming a regular Officer of the Indian Army in November 1945, Major General D’ Souza distinguished himself in operations in the Uri Sector in Jammu & Kashmir in 1948 and was mentioned in Dispatches. At the young age of 28, he went to the Defence Services Staff College at Wellington, Nilgris in 1949. In 1952, he was posted on the Staff of Military Adviser HICOMIND London and he served in that position till 1955. He commanded a force of 25000 regular and para military forces during the 1971 War against Pakistan and was awarded PVSM. He retired as GOC Delhi Area in 1975, after 33 years of very distinguished and meritorious service. Even after his retirement, he has kept himself busy in very meaningful social and public service. Several organizations have honoured him for his public-spirited endeavours. The Rotary Club of Bombay honoured him with its Public Award for Courage and Perseverance during the 1995 Mumbai Riots.

    Referring to the low level of emoluments in the Armed Forces, Major General D’ Souza states that there is a great disparity between emoluments of the Private Sector and the Armed Forces which is not only dissuading young Indians from applying for Commissions in the Armed Forces, but is also pushing Serving Officers to seek premature retirement in order to move to greener pastures. Why not? Officers of the Armed Forces need to live decent lives, educate their children and plan for an early retirement between 50 and 60 depending on their ranks and not as in the Civil Services at 60.

    In the context of hardships and ordeals faced by Army Officers during their official career, I would like to cite the example of Major General D’ Souza. After serving in the Army for 16 years from 1942, he was posted to the militant-prone sector of Poonch in 1958. Thus he was separated from his family from 1958 till 1969. He kept his wife in a private bungalow in Mhow Cantt. He was forced to send his two sons to Mt.Abu because there were no good English Medium Schools in Mhow Cantt. at that time. Thus he gives us this sad story relating to the difficulties he had to face on account of his having to maintain three family establishments with his meager salary in those days. As a result of these prolonged separations, his wife suffered a nervous breakdown! There are innumerable examples of this kind relating to family trauma in the Armed Forces. As Major General D’ Souza puts it in poignant terms: ‘Which Babu sitting in his luxury office in South Block sends his sons to the Army? Because of his cozy stability, he is able to send his children to Ivy League Institutions in India and Abroad. How can such a bureaucrat ever get the feel of the inbuilt hazards of soldiering in its current avatar?’

    When GEORGE FERNANDES, our former DEFENCE MINISTER, went to visit our troops in Siachen, he was shocked to see the conditions of service in the highest battlefield in the World, facing a live and deadly enemy. He was aghast to note the shortage of Snowmobiles that were available for transporting supplies to our Armed Forces in Siachen including kerosene from helipads/dropping zones. On his return to his office in South Block in New Delhi, George Fernandes called for the files and was shocked to learn that his Babu’s were totally unconcerned about processing the case for acquisition of additional vehicles for military use in Siachen. To teach them a lesson, George Fernandes packed those wooden, insensitive, and irresponsible Babus to get a taste of Siachen. The files thereafter were never held up by these Babus and were cleared expeditiously!

    Never since Independence have elemental passions and emotions——not only among serving Services Personnel but also among Ex-servicemen — been aroused to such an extent as in recent weeks in different parts of India. All of them have made it clear to the government of India that they can never hope to get any justice from the Sixth Pay Commission. When the disgruntled and agitating ex-servicemen wanted to air their legitimate grievances in a silent and disciplined manner by paying their homage to the martyrs who have died fighting for our country at the Amar Jawan Jyothi Memorial at India Gate in New Delhi on 27 April 2008, the government of Delhi (which does not exclude the government of India!) covered themselves with everlasting shame and infamy by imposing a ban under Section 144 of the IPC. Un-subdued, unshaken and un-seduced, the ex-servicemen of India conducted 30 meetings at War Memorials in different parts of the country — Delhi (Jantar Mantar), Chandigarh, Amritsar, Bangalore, Nerul Navi Mumbai etc. Protesting through demonstrations and speeches (quite contrary to the Armed Forces culture) several meetings were organized in a dignified manner. In all those meetings, the services of thousands of men who have sacrificed their lives for our country were remembered and recalled. The three Service Chiefs, in a demonstration of solidarity, met the Defence Minister A K Anthony and expressed their strong sense of dismay and unhappiness at the Sixth Pay Commissions recommendations on which there was no representative of the Armed Forces.

    An Ex-Army Chief General Malik made an impassioned written appeal to the Prime Minister bringing these patent instances of injustice done to the Armed Forces of India to his notice. As a poor consolation prize, the impotent government of India nominated its no less impotent Cabinet Secretary to conduct a lunch meeting with the three Service Chiefs. This is a classic instance of ‘Sonia-Congress UPA hypocrisy at its pseudo secular anti-national (anti-Armed Forces!) best’. In this context, I am only reminded of the following rapier-like words of W.Somerset Maugham (1874-1965): ‘Hypocrisy is the most difficult and nerve-racking vice that any man can pursue; it needs an unceasing vigilance and a rare detachment of spirit. It cannot, like adultery or gluttony, be practiced at spare moments; it is a whole time job’.

    In my view the following are the main legitimate grievances of the Armed Forces of India:

    1. There is an imperative national need to have a separate Pay Commission for the Armed Forces of India.

    2. One representative each from the Army, Navy and the Air Force will have to be included in all such Pay Commissions.

    3. There has to be a revision of emoluments in the Armed Forces in an issue based manner and the long-standing demand for ‘One Rank One Pension’ has to be conceded forthwith to boost the sagging morale of the Armed Forces.

    I fully endorse the following words of Major General D’ Souza: ‘Logic demands that service in the Armed Forces of India based on historic grounds since Independence cannot be equated with other Civil Services. Unless the whole procedure and composition of Pay Commissions are revised, the Services will no longer be sought by our youth as careers, especially in the Officer cadre. This is obvious from the marked short fall in intakes for Commissions and the increasing number of Service Personnel seeking premature retirement. Can the Nation afford to reach such a dangerous impasse with cross border militancy on the increase as evidenced in the recent Samba and Pulwama incidents; the growing problems of Naxalites; the location of Chinese Nuclear Missiles on the Indo-Chinese border facing India and its strident claims on Arunachal Pradesh; the growing Maoist influence in our immediate neighbourhood and our UN Commitments’.
    Against this background, Major General D’ Souza has made the following recommendations on the sensitive issue of emoluments in the Armed Forces of India:
    A. As a long-term measure, there should be a separate Pay Commission for the Armed Forces.

    B. In the case of the Sixth Pay Commission recommendations, a GOP of Ministers from all parties representing all States should be set up to examine and rectify the Sixth Pay Commission’s recommendations. This high level group should be divided into sub-groups to examine the serving conditions of the Services in Siachen, the desert, the tropical jungles of the North-East, Jammu & Kashmir and North-East Frontier Agency and the plight of Ex-servicemen.

    C. The equation with the Civil Services should be rectified.

    D. The Supreme Commander, our President, should be apprised of these glaring deficiencies.

    E. Early retirement ages should be compensated by lateral entry into the public sector.

    F. All our TV channels should have a debate on this issue both in Hindi and English and the regional languages so that the person in the street is made aware of these disparities.
    (To be contd…)(The writer is a retired IAS officer)e-mail the writer at
    vsundaram@newstodaynet.com

  151. SAM June 28, 2008 at 10:17 am #

    Why do I still serve you?

    How you play with us, did you ever see?
    At Seven, I had decided what I wanted to be;
    I would serve you to the end,
    All these boundaries I would defend.

    Now you make me look like a fool,
    When at Seventeen and just out of school;
    Went to the place where they made “men out of boys”
    Lived a tough life …sacrificed a few joys…

    In those days, I would see my ‘civilian’ friends,
    Living a life with the fashion trends;
    Enjoying their so called “College Days”
    While I sweated and bled in the sun and haze…
    But I never thought twice about what where or why
    All I knew was when the time came, I’d be ready to do or die.

    At 21 and with my commission in hand,
    Under the glory of the parade and the band,
    I took the oath to protect you over land, air or sea,
    And make the supreme sacrifice when the need came to be.

    I stood there with a sense of recognition,
    But on that day I never had the premonition,
    that when the time came to give me my due,
    You’d just say,” What is so great that you do?”

    Long back you promised a well to do life;
    And when I’m away, take care of my wife.
    You came and saw the hardships I live through,
    And I saw you make a note or two,
    And I hoped you would realise the worth of me;
    but now I know you’ll never be able to see,
    Because you only see the glorified life of mine,
    Did you see the place where death looms all the time?
    Did you meet the man standing guard in the snow?
    The name of his newborn he does not know…
    Did you meet the man whose father breathed his last?
    While the sailor patrolled our seas so vast?

    You still know I’ll not be the one to raise my voice
    I will stand tall and protect you in Punjab Himachal and Thois.

    But that’s just me you have in the sun and rain,
    For now at Twenty Four, you make me think again;
    About the decision I made, Seven years back;
    Should I have chosen another life, some other track?

    Will I tell my son to follow my lead?
    Will I tell my son, you’ll get all that you need?
    This is the country you will serve
    This country will give you all that you deserve?

    I heard you tell the world “India is shining”
    I told my men, that’s a reason for us to be smiling
    This is the India you and I will defend!
    But tell me how long will you be able to pretend?
    You go on promise all that you may,
    But it’s the souls of your own men you betray.

    Did you read how some of our eminent citizens
    Write about me and ridicule my very existence?
    I ask you to please come and see what I do,
    Come and have a look at what I go through
    Live my life just for a day
    Maybe you’ll have something else to say?

    I will still risk my life without a sigh
    To keep your flag flying high
    but today I ask myself a question or two…
    Oh India…. Why do I still serve you?

  152. K Narendra Singh June 28, 2008 at 12:25 pm #

    The attitude is reminiscent of the days when the rulerof decaying empire said HANOOZ DEHLI DOOR AST.Nothing short of a revolution can change the corrupt and incompetant set up. I say to them – Aata nahin yaqeen tou doobti kishti ko dekh – tou hi nakhuda nahin zalim khuda bhi hai.
    chara nahin koi jaltay rehnay kay sewa- sanchay main fana kay dhaltay rehnay kay sewa
    woh alam hai ub khushk ankhon main apni – teh tofan hai barpa rawani nahin hai
    K Narendra Singh

  153. Blake June 28, 2008 at 4:12 pm #

    @SAM
    that is an excellent effort . Is that yours ? Very beautifully rhymed!

  154. PS June 28, 2008 at 5:20 pm #

    @K Narendra Singh
    Sir,
    Request a translation please.
    Thank you

  155. Brig Vijay Raheja June 29, 2008 at 1:06 pm #

    I took premature release from Idian Army 1n 1997 – answer was simple – my terminal benefits were matched by Corporate Salary or what is called Cost To Company (CTC). There has been no looking back.
    Today Defence Oficers are at senior posts in corporate world, particulary in Telecom Industry – it spaeks volumes of the Training, both in management and technology that the Services gave us

    I have been speaking to number of officers and persuading them that ‘ Luck Favours The Brave’, yet few are prepared to risk the safe environs of a Govt job and risk the challenges of the cruel Corporate World . It is easy to pass comments and criticise the wonderful Organistion -that is the Indian Army; so for those who wish to quit just remember going in the Corporate world is tough, at the same time remember when it is tough the tough get tougher.

  156. rorak June 29, 2008 at 3:18 pm #

    @ sam,
    “I will still risk my life without a sigh
    To keep your flag flying high
    but today I ask myself a question or two…
    Oh India…. Why do I still serve you?”

    Brilliant piece!!!
    Indians we all are.
    You serve because you are not a traitor. Those depriving you of your dues are !

  157. shuks June 29, 2008 at 3:21 pm #

    I fully agree with Brig Raheja but this may be true for mostly technical arms and services.I have also proceeded on voluntary retirement as a signaller in last month and joined at senior level in corporate.It is because of what Army made me over 25 years of service. Choices are limited for other arms and services but once one comes out and joins corporate he will still be better off as for as CTC is concerned.
    Col(Retd) Shukla

  158. Navdeep June 29, 2008 at 4:31 pm #

    A true newsreport on what’s to be expected from 6th CPC has been placed by me on my blog, anyone interested may peruse.

    http://www.indianmilitarybenefits.blogspot.com

    @All above

    I agree that the Army is a great org, but still we need to look within since for improvement there has to be thorough introspection. I know we tend to get wild whenever Pragmatic tries to bring to light stuff that on first glance appears hurtful, but let’s take it in the positive spirit, atleast it leads us to think, argue and perhaps disagree. And also it doesn’t take a blind fisherman to see that quality of intake and brains has deteriorated, and second / third / fourth (or mo’) generation officers would be the best ones to know this for a fact – and kiddish comments and personal attacks (such as – Prags you must be an anti-national ‘cunning bureaucrat’) go on to show just that. If we want to not agree, disagree we must but on the basis of logic.

    @PS
    What’s up with this ‘liftable’ thing ? you are great !!!

  159. shuks June 29, 2008 at 7:23 pm #

    I am moved by such creative poetry by Sam and Narendra Singh.Because of your work prag is alive. I salute.

  160. Sujata June 30, 2008 at 4:19 pm #

    @Sam

    It’s not only your words and the rhyming that makes you a great poet,I would say it is the true feelings of a soldier that only a soldier can understand.You brought tears to my eyes.

  161. raj July 5, 2008 at 2:06 pm #

    is dre ne news of the latest revised report.
    i hope this govt ll give a little better fr some face saving.

  162. Chou August 2, 2008 at 6:10 pm #

    no comments from Pragmatic on Sam’s poetry ?????

  163. red rag August 22, 2008 at 5:33 pm #

    I am sorry to have to disagree with the contents. Service officers are not asking you to give them the salaries that corporates give their equivalents.

    Second, the salaries of the President, VP, PM etc should not be used as a yardstick to measure whether the Cabinet Secretary should get a proportion or ratio. Their invisible perks are many times what the COAS or his equivalent gets.

    Third the para-military face the naxal menace but then so does the army face the ULFA, the Pak-trained militants, the insurgents elsewhere and so on. It might suit someone to say that the Armed forces are trained to fight them. To them I say, alas, the Armed Forces are trained to fight foreign adversaries. Pandit Nehru was adamant that the Police fight insurgents (and naxalites) and maintain internal law & order. But the Army is doing that is Assam and in Kashmir.

    Fourth, the Armed Forces are asking for parity with the IAS because you cannot have President’s Commission officers being placed on a lower strata unless you consider that the PC is devalued.

    Last, CTC – please visit any Army/navy/Air Force base and see how many really stay in well maintained (by the Military Engineering Service, a majority of whom are civilians) flats, let alone those palatial bungalows that I read so much about.

  164. isacoyd September 5, 2008 at 10:52 pm #

    First time visitor. Request all contributors to read the poem ‘Tommy’ by Rudyard Kipling. You will understand

  165. seraj September 6, 2008 at 12:28 pm #

    The following simple mathematical model would remove the wool from the eyes of those who are hell bent to let down the Armed Forces personnel. The existing basic pay of Lt Col is Rs 13500/- plus Rank Pay of Rs 1600/- Now, please tell a student of 6th class to solve following question:-
    Number 12000 represents S23/PB3
    Number 14300 represents S24/PB4
    You have to round off the Number 13500 to one of above two numbers. Where would you place it? (Don’t apply your heart, use only the Head)
    Answer- Is it not S24/PB4

  166. sunil September 9, 2008 at 1:16 pm #

    Let me preempt clarify certain doubts of your. Military ie Army, Navy and the AF is special, it is a tough life, u sitting in some cushy office will never be able to appreciate this. Have u stood guard in worst wather conditions or in a known hostile environment, u haven’t, have u ever sailed in those rough seas where even water is rationed for days together with salt is sticking all over the body but u cant say no, u puke and the stink of the puke acts detrimental to eat, in a cabin of the size of a room 20 men stays day in and out and still r supposed to wear immaculate dress , u haven’t, have u seen how AF pilots and staff operates in worst situations , u haven’t. So therefore if u haven’t experienced anything pse don’t comment. The honesty, loyalty and leadership of defence officers is beyond compare in anycase with babus. Some exceptions exists in each fields.
    The government can not afford a step-motherly treatment for its civilian employees and has to distribute to everyone with an even hand. Let me explain where the babus , police , bureaucracy and politicians fails the defence is called for help. So therefore the problems r created by all and the linen is left for the forces to wash. We never questioned it and follows what is ordered in this great democracy.
    In any case, the paramilitary troopers serving in Naxal infested areas are also leading a tough life as do the foreign service professionals serving in Iraq or Afghanistan.How many except on finger tips and that too they r protected and who does that u r ignorant.

    Civilian Employee’s working-hours start from 9 in the morning to 5 in the evening. Are lucky to enjoy the company of their family and vice versa.C.E can lead a settled life through out their tenure. Babus with their pot bellies have the appetite for more without bothering his physical fitness. Children education is settled without disturbance and so on and on ————-?

    THE TRUTH IS GOD AND SOLDIERS R REMEMBERED WHEN THERE IS A PROBLEM, OTHERWISE FORGOTTEN. FOR HEAVENS SAKE BEFORE WRITING USE UR BRAIN
    A SERVING OFFICER

  167. Roke September 9, 2008 at 1:38 pm #

    THE FOURTH PAY COMM CARVED RANK PAY OUT OF YOUR BASIC.
    SO WHEN THE FIFTH PAY COMM INCREASED THE BASIC FOR ALL BY 3.6 TIMES, THE RANK PAY INCREASED ONLY 2 TIMES THUS A LT COL LOST OUT ON 1000/- PM ON THE RANK PAY. ALSO A LT COL RANK WAS ACHIEVED AT 18 YRS OF SERVICE ie BASIC OF 4000/-, THIS WHEN MULTIPLIED BY 3.6 TIMES MAKES IT 14400, WHEREAS THE MIN BASIC FOR LT COL WAS 13500/-.

    TO CALCULATE OTHERWAY

    THE RANK PAY WAS CARVED OUT OF BASIC PAY,MISCHIEVOUSLY, BY THE FIN MIN BABUS. POINT ACCEPTED BY SUPREME COURT.

    SO THE BASIC PAY OF A LT COL, WHEN MOST OF THE SENIOR LT COLs JOINED THE ARMY, WAS ADVERTISED TO BE 4000+800(RANK PAY).

    THE FIFTH PAY COMM MULTIPLIED ALL BASIC PAY BY 3.6, HENCE THE LT COL’s BASIC SHOULD HAVE BEEN = 4800 X 3.6 = 17200.
    BUT IT WAS REDUCED TO 13500+1600 = 15100.

    EVEN IF WE TAKE THE MINM SERVICE TO BECOME LT COL AS 16.5 YEARS AS IN CASE OF ARMY/PILOTS, STILL THE DOWNGRADATION WAS CLEAR AND NOW SPC WANTS TO DOWNGRADE YOU FURTHER.
    YOU ALL SHOULD GO TO COURT FOR REDUCING YOUR PAY AND STATUS BY EVERY PAY COMM AND ALSO FOR LURING YOU BY WRONGFUL ADVERTISING.

  168. I AM LOVING IT September 23, 2008 at 3:23 pm #

    Thread is interesting read probably Armed Forces need to learn and take objective lessons.
    1. Raise up your hand when called for Internal security duties and Aid to civ authority.Ask first for proper logistics like any other organisation.
    2. Lets not hype Armed forces and next time in Kargil please don’t loose your men for few inch of land.
    3. Lets not commit lives of Jawans for a small mistake of administration for in house cleaning .
    4. Leave your officers prematurely why do you hold them back? If somebody wishes to leave early like in civil services let them go?For country is run by 600 per year and not you 2000 per year walas.
    5. Please work according to your payband and don’t jump guns when called for joint operations.
    6. Why be jumpinig Jackass ? When attacked by our friendly neighbours ask the higher payband walas to suggest measures and counter measures.
    Jai Hind

  169. cynical September 26, 2008 at 6:03 pm #

    mr pragmatic
    This thread was a great read. even with a twisted thought process like yous how do you justifya civil servant who prior to a pay commission was getting similar pay scale and post it gets more than his armed forces counterpart.