1962 war veteran never got pension; now widow loses canteen facility

Courtesy: Bangalore Mirror ; Edition dated: 14th March, 2015

A brave soldier who survived the 1962 war with China could not win his battle for the only source of livelihood post-retirement – his pension for the 39 years he was alive after leaving service.

And thanks to apathy of army authorities, the suffering of his family continues 13 years after he is dead and gone.

The strange case of late sepoy M M Nanaiah of Madras regiment (no.2532793) came to light after the army canteen facility to his family was withdrawn in 2011.

Nanaiah’s wife had approached Mysuru-based VeKare Ex-Servicemen Trust (which also operates from Bengaluru), which takes up the cause of ex-servicemen from across the country.

The president of the trust, air force senior non-commissioned officer Mandetira N Subramani, who took up the case, was astonished to discover last month that a blunder of not posting a pension pay order (PPO) sanctioned way back in 1963 by the records officials had devastated the war veteran’s family.

Nanaiah had served the Indian army for 15 years from March 20, 1948 to July 5, 1963.

Later, he kept on applying for his pension with the records to Madras, Wellington and Ooty regiments where he had served. However, he never received either a PPO or a reply. Efforts went on during his lifetime but in vain. He passed away in 2002.

“His wife M N Kamala too has not got her due till date, making it a classic case of government apathy,” Subramani told Bangalore Mirror.

After Nanaiah’s death, the only facility his wife could get from the army was the canteen facility from Karnataka and Kerala Sub Area’s Golden Palm canteen, where one can avail groceries and other amenities at subsidised rates.

However, in another jolt, it was also withdrawn in February 2011. The officials had withdrawn canteen facility stating that Nanaiah’s wife was not in receipt of family pension and that a proof for receipt of pension and PPO should be produced to avail the facility, Subramani added.

When Subramani demanded records of Nanaiah’s service, it came to light that all the while Nanaiah was fighting his battle for his pension, his PPO sanctioned way back in 1963 lay with the records section of Madras regiment and had never reached either the treasury or Nanaiah.

GOVT ASSURANCE

“Though it appears to be a small error, the damage is irreparable. We will take up the cause of the family,” said Flt Lt M S Lolaksha (retd), director, department of sainik welfare and resettlement.

3 Comments on 1962 war veteran never got pension; now widow loses canteen facility

  1. Col (Retd) Manmeet Singh // March 20, 2015 at 9:15 pm //

    SHAMEFUL…. is a mild term to use for this goof-up by Records Madras Regimental Centre,Wellington and Sub AREA Commanders and staff officers…….Records Madras Regimental Centre,Wellington is next door to OWL..Staff College…from maximum Generals/equivalent take pride of the elite course qualification…THIS SHOULD BE A CASE STUDY in OWL.Kudos to senior non-commissioned officer Mandetira N Subramani….Kindly share this sad story with ARNAB GOSWAMI(ex-fauji’s son) of TIMES NOW….its a fit case to be covered at 9 pm TIMES NOW.

  2. Deryck Fernandes // March 23, 2015 at 11:41 am //

    While this a case of extreme carelessness on the part of the staff of the Madras Regimental Centre , and should be dealt with as such,it also brings out the fact that servicemen are released into “civvie street ” with little or no knowledge of what is expected of them.Within the space of a few hours they are catapulted from their secure service environment to the dog-eat-dog outside world.It would be desirable,even essential for servicemen to be thoroughly briefed on the procedures they should take after their release.The agencies with whom they would be interacting could also be given some “sensitization training “; who knows, at least some of the babus might tend to take a softer stand with our retirees.

  3. Col Lava Kumar (Veteran) // March 23, 2015 at 1:10 pm //

    The subject and the observation needs to be debated on the type of Babus in uniform are posted at the Record Office (in this case esp MRC) and their style of functioning in the public domain. A letter to Defence Minister with details of the case would be apt. I second Col Manmeet Singh’s suggestion – A case study at OWL !!! (DSSC, Wellington).

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