Minister of State for External Affairs General (Retired) VK Singh’s daughter Mrinalini on Sunday reached Jantar Mantar to join the protest demanding implementation of One Rank, One Pension (OROP) scheme for ex-servicemen.
“I personally feel that one rank one pension should be implemented as soon as possible. I am here to support the cause of ex-servicemen because I am an ex-serviceman’s daughter,” Mrinalini said.
My appeal to all children is to come out and support your veterans, she added.
Asked if her father, Minister of State for External Affairs Singh, approves her joining the protest since he is serving in the Narendra Modi government, she said, “I have not sought his permission and neither do I need his permission. I have come straight from Hisar because I feel for the cause. A few years down the line, I will also become the wife of an ex-serviceman.”
She added that she has full faith in Prime Minister Narendra Modi who has promised the OROP.
The fast-unto-death being held by two protesting ex-servicemen at Jantar Mantar in Delhi demanding early implementation of the long-pending ‘One Rank, One Pension’ scheme entered its seventh day on Sunday.
Representatives of the ex-servicemen, who have been protesting for the last 67 days, are likely to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi next week.
Close to 22 lakh ex-servicemen and over six lakh war widows stand to be the immediate beneficiaries of the scheme, which envisages a uniform pension for defence personnel who retire in the same rank with the same length of service, irrespective of their date of retirement.
Currently, the pension for retired personnel is based on the Pay Commission recommendations of the time when he or she retired. So, a Major General who retired in 1996 draws a lower pension than a Lieutenant Colonel who retired after 1996.