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On the occasion of Armed Forces Flag Day, an appeal goes out to the PM, HM and the Government, to work towards helping the cause of Defence veterans
In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Rajnath Singh, lawyer, activist and former Army reservist Navdeep Singh, has appealed to both authorities to address issues faced by Armed Forces Veterans. On the occasion of the Armed Forces Flag Day this year on 8th December, it is important that we as a nation address the problems faced by army veterans. The Flag Day was begun by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru when he was PM, to remind the nation that it must come together to contribute to the welfare of soldiers, the letter says.
The letter is endorsed by Rajya Sabha MP Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Kiran Bedi, Moneylife Foundation's Sucheta Dalal, Retired Admiral Arun Prakash and many other senior ex-servicemen and civilians.
The letter's focus is on three main points that the signees hope will be addressed by the government on an urgent basis:
• Direct Ministry of Defence to withdraw litigation initiated against disabled soldiers and military widows related to the subject of their disability and pensionary benefits at the earliest.
• Constitute a committee, with stakeholders and independent experts as members, to resolve all policy anomalies which have given rise to litigation in issues concerning military veterans and widows.
• Ensure that officers serving in the Ministry of Defence in general, and Department of Ex-servicemen Welfare in particular, are sensitised towards the needs and requirements of the military community and realise that it is their pious obligation to serve soldiers, veterans and their families, giving them due respect and dignity which they deserve.
Reminding the PM and the HM of their manifesto where they promised to 'minimise appeals' against ex-servicemen and their disability and other benefits, the letter also points to promises made by PM Modi in his election speeches on this count.
Keeping in mind the sacrifices and losses suffered by not just army-men, but also their families and loved one, there is an urgent need to make sure that a retired or injured ex-serviceman is accorded every facility and courtesy in tribute to his or her work for the nation.
Here is the letter sent to PM Modi, Home Minister Rajnath Singh, and the Indian govt…