L E T T E R S    T O    T H E    E D I T O R

Raw deal for pre-2006 pensioners

The Government of India’s notification on revision of pension of pre-2006 pensioners, family pensioners etc. comes as a bolt from the blue. First, the pre-2006 pensioners and family pensioners have been granted additional pension of 20 per cent at the age of 80 years, 30 per cent at 85 years, 40 per cent at 90 years, 50 per cent at 95 years and 100 per cent at 100 years of age.

The average lifespan of a pensioner is 20 years after retirement and as such over 95 per cent of the pensioners pass away before attaining the age of 80 years. Consequently, the grant of additional pension to the pensioners is fictional only.

The Punjab government pensioners have been getting additional pension @ 5 per cent of the basic pension at the age of 65 years and 10 per cent at 75 years. The Centre should do justice to the pensioners and grant additional pension of 5 per cent at 65 years of age, 10 per cent at 70 years, 15 per cent at 75 years and 20 per cent at 80 years of age and so on as already approved in this regard.

Secondly, there is an imperative need to increase the medical allowance to Rs 1000 a month with exemption from income-tax.

Full reimbursement of indoor treatment in government and approved hospitals should also be given to the pensioners.

And finally, the grant of LTC equivalent to basic pension once in two years for the Central Government pensioners, as in Punjab, is also overdue.

Dr PREM SINGH DAHIYA, President, Central Pensioners’ Welfare Assn, Rohtak

Parity in pension

In the news-item (Sept 11), pension of a pre-1996 retired Major-General was fixed lower than that of Brigadier who is one rank lower. The High Court, in a ruling, has stepped up the pension of pre-1996 which the Supreme Court upheld.

In the state services, such anomaly shall also crop up and create financial loss to them while fixing the pension. On the same analogy of the decision of the High Court, the state governments should keep in mind this pertinent point while implementing the pay commission’s recommendation to all categories of employees.

V.K. MOUDGIL, Shamshi, Kullu (HP)

Is it Asia’s turn?

American economy, the strongest in the world, is facing a horrible slump and almost all top banks there are facing the problem of shortage of funds. Consequently, all banks have reduced the interest rates.

However, the issue in question is whether it would adversely affect the whole world. Not surprisingly, the Russian market has closed in the past four days and now the Asian markets, too, are suffering.

The BSE in India has come down substantially. Other markets are also on lower points. Where is it all leading to?

Will the Asian market be disturbed?

NITIN GUPTA, Jalandhar

Changing of names

The Punjab government’s notification to name Nawanshahr after Shaheed Bhagat Singh, though done with a noble and great intention, is most unlikely to serve the desired purpose. Experience shows that the changing of names remains confined to the revenue records and it leads to confusion in the history as well.

Earlier the names of Ropar had been changed to Roop Nagar, Mohali to Sahibzada Ajit Singh Nagar and Sunam to Udhamsinghwala. But in common parlance, the names remain unchanged. Moreover, Shaheed Bhagat Singh is too great to be limited to one particular, that too, a small district.

GURPEET SINGH JOHAL, Mandiani (Ludhiana)

Punjab polytechnics

Students from Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Haryana and adjoining states take admission in Punjab’s polytechnics after clearing an examination conducted by the Punjab Board of Technical Education. After spending huge money on the diploma courses, some students fail to clear the final and third year examination in some papers.

The PBTE should help such students take the examination. Those who have appeared in their final year examination in 2008 but could not clear some papers could be considered.


Politics over floods 

Bihar is facing the worst floods in 50 years. About half of the state is under water. It is a catastrophe like the Gujarat earthquake or the tsunami. Millions of people are homeless.

Despite the deployment of thousands of defence personnel and hard work done by state agencies and NGOs, the condition remains grave. There are reports of riots over food.

Admittedly, no dam, embankment or bundh can contain floodwaters of such magnitude. It is simply unimaginable. Whether the pressure of floodwaters was too critical that it bypassed the barrage or was deliberately cut by Nepal to save its own territory from flooding is a matter of thorough investigation.

Unfortunately, politicians of all hues are busy playing politics over the miseries of people in distress. They should give primacy to national interest and work selflessly to mitigate the woes of the suffering millions.

J. K. MAGO, Panchkula



HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |