1. The contents of any letter of Govt of India are so cryptic that it becomes difficult for all to understand what do they mean. So is the Ministry of Personnel, Pensions and Public Grievances letter dated 06 Apr 2016. To understand this letter, you have to read and read like I did five to six times. What did the letter say? It simply says All Central Government pensioners will get pension equal to 50% of sum of (Minimum pay in pay band + Grade pay + MSP (for Defence Pensioners) even if they did not put in 33 years’ service. Please understand this letter is addressed to Central Govt Civilian employees. The letter will apply mutatis mutandis to Defence Pensioners too.
2. Now like a good fauji understand its relevance to us. I always feel to understand any complex problem let us take an example which even a Sepoy can understand. Then we go to Officers. Let me be bit verbose and give a bit of history of this famous 33 year rule.
History of 33 Year Rule
3. Faujis had separate military pay commissions till 1976. The Govt of India gave a gift to faujis by combining Civil and Military Central Pay Commissions and called it 3rd Central Pay Commission (CPC). 3rd CPC saw the average entry of civilians into Central Govt service was 25 and age of retirement in 1970s was 58 years. So any Central Govt civilian can serve for maximum of 58 – 25 = 33 years.
4. Full Pension. 3rd CPC introduced the term Full Pension only if one serves for a period of 33 years. Otherwise pension will be reduced on pro-rata basis for lesser service. They were very kind to give faujis Rank Weigtage as we do not serve for 33 years. So rank weightage was introduced for faujis. The rank weightage is dependent upon one’s rank at the time of retirement. The same is given here:-
(a) Sepoy - 10 years (enhanced to 12 years w.e.f. 24 Sep 2012)
(b) Naik - 8 year (enhanced to 10 years w.e.f. 24 Sep 2012)
(c) Havildar - 6 years (enhanced to 8 year w.e.f. 24 Sep 2012)
(d) JCOs - 5 years.
(e) Lt and Capt - 9 years
(f) Maj - 8 years
(g) Lt Col (TS) - 5 years
(h) Lt Col (SG ) - 7 years
(j) Brig - 5 years
(k) Gen Offrs - 3 years
5. How are the pensions of all pre – 2006 faujis was calculated?
6. Sepoys. Sepoys were permitted to serve only for 15 years and with rank weightage of 10 years his pensionable or qualifying service comes to 25 years. Since he did not complete 33 years his pension is reduced on pro –rata basis to = Full pension x (15+10)/33. Pension is as per Hon’ble Supreme Court judgment is 50% of sum of Minimum pay in pay band, Grade pay and Military Service Pay. Minimum pay in pay band is given in SAI 1/S/2008 for JCOs and OR and SAI 2/S/2008 for Officers. Full Pension of Sepoy with rank weightage as explained above comes to = 0.50 x ( minimum pay in pay band of Rs 6250 + grade pay of Rs 2000 + MSP of Rs 2000) = Rs 5125 pm + DR. Sepoy gets this pension if he serves for 33 years. That is why Circular 547 says pension of Sepoy with 15 years’ service in Group Y is = Rs 5125 x (15+10)/33 = Rs 3883.
7. Single lady of this Sepoy gets 60% or Rs 3500 whichever is higher. So she gets pension of Rs 3500 pm + DR.
8. Is this just? Answer is NO. Why?
9. Courts of law go by their own previous judgments. Hon’ble Supreme Court in the famous Maj Gen SPS Vains Vs UOI, 2008 gave a land mark judgment which said ANY BENEFIT GIVEN TO PRESENT PENSIONERS HAVE TO BE GIVEN TO PAST PENSIONERS. OTHERWISE YOU ARE VIOLATING ART 14 OF CONSTITUION i.e. EQUALITY.
10. You do not have to be MML and PhD to understand this simple ruling which is LAW OF THE LAND. Every one understands it (including my 5 year old grand daughter Pari) except officials of Govt of India.
11. 6th CPC in their wisdom removed rule of 33 years. JCO/OR have to serve for 15 years to get pension of and Officers 20 years to get Pension. No 33 year rule and pro-rata reduction is permissible. Full pension which is 50% of your Last Pay Drawn. So even if you are a PMR case and if you put in minimum pensionable service you will get Full Pension.
12. Shri MO Inasu, an Ex-Serviceman re-employed in Central Govt as Deputy Office Superintendent challenged this rule of 33 years for all pre – 2006 pensioners. CAT Ernakulam did not agree to his plea. He went to High Court of Kerala who found fault with judgment of CAT and asked them to review. Once bitten and twice shy CAT agreed to plea of Shri MO Inasu as per judgment of Hon’ble Supreme Court rule of 33 years which is not applicable to post – 2006 retirees then the same should not be applied to pre – 2006 retirees.
13. This judgment of CAT Ernakulam had far reaching consequences to all PMR cases who were given reduced pension. Especially Sepoys to Havildars, PMR Officers & JCOs and most negligent segment of faujis i.e. Family Pensioners. Govt of India as expected appealed for review of this judgment and the same was dismissed by all courts including Hon’ble Supreme Court in 2015. Min of PPP&G recommended to the cabinet to implement judgment of the apex court to all i.e. Universal application.
14. What is the Effect of Min of PPP & G letter dt 06 Apr 2016 on Faujis?
15. I am extremely happy to tell you sir again with an example, the benefit of this judgment of Hon’ble Supreme Court. As is my wont, first is JCOs, OR and Family pensioners. Table is the best to understand.
Full Pension as per SAI 1/S/2008
Pro-Rata Reduced pension as per Circular 547
Loss per Month
Sepoy Group – Y with 15 years
From Jan 2006 to 30 Jun 2009 = Rs 68,248;
From Jul 2009 to 23 Sep 2012 = Rs 39751;
From 24 Sep 2012 to 30 Jun 2014 = Rs 7079
Total Arrears = Rs 1,15,077
Single Lady or Family Pensioner of Sepoy = Rs 0.6 x 115077 = Rs 69,046
Naik of Group Y with 15 years’ service
Hav of Group Y with 15 years’ service
16. Since you are good in Arithmetic please calculate how much arrears Officers from Lt to Brig who put in less than 33 years service (PMR Cases) and who do not get full pension will now get thanks to this Govt of India letter dated 06 Apr 2016. As you know one line letter will be issued by Ministry of Def which might read “Contents of Ministry of PPP &G letter dated 06 Apr 2016 will apply mutatis mutandis to Defence Services personnel”.
17. What will Happen Now?
18. History will be repeated. PCDA (Pensions) Allahabad will not wake up (should have woken up when they knew Min of PPP &G has recommended universal application of judgment of Hon’ble Supreme Court in 2015 and should have prepared tables of arrears of Full Pension) will take six months to issue letter to all PDAs to calculate arrears and pay them to affected personnel i.e. those who do not get full pension. Every bank will understand the letter of Govt of India, Min of PPP & G in their own way and will make their own software for arriving at arrears. Pensioners of same rank, same length of service and same group will be paid different arrears in the same village, town, city and metro by different banks like they did for 6th CPC arrears from Jan 2006 to Jun 2009 for JCOs, OR & Family Pensioners and from Jan 2006 to 23 Sep 2012 for Officers and Single ladies. All those beneficiaries can expect some incorrect arrears only in year of Lord 2017.
19. I hope you have no doubts on the implications of the letter of Min of PPP & G dated 06 Apr 2016 which I consider a very close to my heart as it will benefit Sepoys to Hav, PMR JCOs and OR a lot.
20. To make things simple for all those officers who think 2 + 4 is Mathematics you are not eligible for any arrears, if your qualifying service is shown below and are getting Full Pension:-
Qualifying Service including OR Service if any
Already Drawing Full Pension (in Rs)
24 years or more
24 years or more
25 years or more
Lt Col (TS)
28 years or more
Lt Col (SG)
26 Years or more
28 years or more
30 years or more
21. Tell me Col Balan Sir, with this long explanation “Are you Eligible for Arrears because of this letter Min of PPP & G letter? If yes tell me the reasons and if not also give me your reasons. Even after knowing the correct answer you pretend like an Inf Offr that you do not know your head will break into thousand pieces like Betal tells Vikramaditya in monthly magazine Chandamama”.
Brig CS Vidyasagar (Rtd)