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Posted at: Jul 20, 2019, 7:55 AM; last updated: Jul 20, 2019, 7:55 AM (IST)

Soldier gets disability pension after 50 years

Soldier gets disability pension after 50 years
Mohinder Singh

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 19

Almost 50 years after a visually impaired soldier was discharged from the Army on medical grounds, he has finally been sanctioned disability pension after a protracted legal battle.

Mohinder Singh, a resident of Banur near Mohali, had joined the Army in February 1968 and was discharged in June 1970 after rendering a service of just two years and four months.

He claimed that during a training exercise near Jhansi, he had fallen on his head in the dark and suffered loss of eyesight. He was admitted to military hospitals in Gwalior and Bhopal several times for eye treatment, but to no avail.

Ultimately, he was discharged with 40 per cent disability and sent home with two persons escorting him, along with an assurance that his disability pension would start soon. With no other source of income, he had to do menial jobs for survival.

He approached the Ex-Servicemen Grievances Cell with his problem, which took up his case for financial assistance with the Zila Sainik Board, Mohali, as well as the Army authorities, and could manage to get him a grant of Rs 1.10 lakh. Simultaneously, his case was taken up with the Sikh Regimental Centre, which conveyed that his disability pension was rejected by the military adviser on pensions (a post now abolished) in the office of the Controller of Defence Accounts for being neither attributable to nor aggravated by military service.

After struggling with the pension authorities for several years, a case was filed before the Armed Forces Tribunal, which decided in Mohinder’s favour. His disability pension was still not released and finally earlier this year, a contempt petition was filed, following which the pension payment order for disability benefits was issued by the Army a few days ago.

Suffered loss of eyesight

  • Mohinder Singh, a resident of Banur near Mohali, had joined the Army in February 1968 and was discharged in June 1970 after rendering a service of just two years and four months.
  • He claimed that during a training exercise near Jhansi, he had fallen on his head in the dark and suffered loss of eyesight.
  • He was admitted to military hospitals in Gwalior and Bhopal several times for eye treatment, but to no avail.
  • Ultimately, he was discharged with 40 per cent disability and sent home with two persons escorting him, along with an assurance that his disability pension would start soon. 

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