New Delhi, April 21: The Congress has repeatedly “bluffed” ex-servicemen on the issue of “one rank, one pension”, senior BJP leader Arun Jaitley said Monday.
“As the election campaign proceeds, I have come across hundreds of ex-servicemen living across the country. They served India through its crisis. All of them are concerned with the issue of ‘one rank, one pension’ which has been a long-standing demand of ex-servicemen,” Jaitley said in his blog.
“The BJP has included the ‘one rank, one pension’ issue as part of its manifesto. We are committed to implement this. The Congress has been repeatedly bluffing ex-servicemen on this issue,” he said.
Jaitley said the demand was accepted by the government a few years ago. “Subsequently, we found the acceptance was only with respect to a very miniscule category and not all ex-servicemen.”
“This year again, in the budget speech, the finance minister announced the acceptance of this demand. However, again the ex-servicemen have been bluffed. No notification has been issued to give enforcement effect to this demand,” the blog said.
The senior BJP leader also blamed Defence Minister A.K. Antony of not taking proper decisions.
“Today the geo-strategic realities of India have changed. A Pakistan-China military axis has come into existence. China’s increased assertiveness and Pakistan’s unpredictability in border relations calls for India never to lower its guard,” he said.
“However, modernization of defence equipment is woefully lacking. Obsolete technologies have to be replaced with state-of-the-art technologies,” he added.
Jaitley said: “The gap between India’s military superiority over Pakistan has somewhat narrowed down. No country with 15,000 km of international border can afford to rely on obsolete technologies.”