The Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear Plea seeking direction to the Central Government to remove the disparity in Pensionary benefit and to extend the old Pension Scheme to the personnel of Armed Forces under the Ministry of Home Affairs as is give to the Armed Forces personnel under the Ministry of Defence.
A two-judge bench of Justices L. Nageswara Rao & S. Ravindra Bhat has granted liberty to the petitioner to approach the High Court.
The petition was filed by a Trust, ‘Hamara Desh Hamare Jawan’ through Adv Ajay Kumar Agarwal who submitted that the govt is applying a hybrid pension scheme which is a mixture of the old and new pension scheme to the Personal of Armed Forces which came under the MHA and who joined the service after January 1, 2004. But it is specifically provided that this new contributory pension is not applicable to the armed forces, stated in the plea.
The petitioner had submitted that such a scheme is violative of the principle of equality as the Armed Forces under the MHA are being discriminated against. Moreover, both are armed forces of the Union under the Ministry of Defence and Home and there should be no disparity and same pensionary benefits to be given to both.
The petitioner had contended,
“Border Security Force, Indo Tibetan Border Police, Assam Rifles, Shastra Seema Bail is protecting our International Borders and equipped with the same weaponry as is provided to forces under Defence Ministry. It’s services are no less than the forces under the Defence Ministry. These forces are protecting our borders round the clock and thousands of personnel had laid their live protecting our borders. Another force namely, CRPF is not only the world’s biggest armed force, but is also considered to be the bravest armed force in the world having a strength of more than 3 lac personnel. On 14th February, 2019 in Pulwama attack around 40 CRPF Personnel had laid their lives.”
He had further alleged,
“Each and every personnel of Armed Forces which comes under the Ministry of Home Affairs wants to get pension under the Old Pension Scheme but the Central Government has denied the pension under the Old Pension Scheme to the Personnel of Armed forces which comes under the Ministry of Home Affairs and therefore discriminating with the armed forces under the Ministry of Defence while both the forces are Armed Forces of the Union.”