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Anna Hazare extends support to ex-servicemen over OROP protests

New Delhi: Social activist Anna Hazare today accused the Narendra Modi-led NDA government of not fulfilling even a “single promise” including implementation of One Rank One Pension (OROP) scheme and assured the defence personnel that

PTI [ Updated: July 26, 2015 22:47 IST ]
anna hazare extends support to ex servicemen over orop
anna hazare extends support to ex servicemen over orop protests

New Delhi: Social activist Anna Hazare today accused the Narendra Modi-led NDA government of not fulfilling even a “single promise” including implementation of One Rank One Pension (OROP) scheme and assured the defence personnel that he will do whatever was possible in getting their due.  

Hazare, a former soldier himself today joined the protests by ex-servicemen over delay in implementation of OROP, said he would travel across the nation to “awaken” people on the issue and it will culminate into a protest at the Ramlila Maidan here on October 2.

Without taking the name of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Gandhian activist said, he (Modi) had promised OROP before the polls, but he is yet to take a decision on the issue.  

“When we will come to power we will implement OROP...they (Modi and the BJP) had told this in Rohtak,” Hazare said while referring to the Prime Minister's pre-election rally.  

“Shahid Diwas (Kargil Vijay Diwas) is not a day to make speeches. We will do whatever (we can) for (implementation) of One Rank One Pension... I will go to many states across the country and do rallies,” he said while addressing ex-defence personnel at Jantar Mantar here where they have been holding protests over the non-implementation of OROP.  

Terming Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar a “good” man, he said, even he has not been able to fulfil the assurance.  “Our Defence Minister is good. He is good and I know him well. In February, he had taken a decision that Rs 500 crore will be taken from the Finance Ministry and if it was less then he will ask for more.

“Still the assurance was not being fulfilled. But this is not happening. Still two months are left. We will go across the country and awaken people,” he said, adding that my only request is please don't resort to violence. Common man should not be affected because of this,” he added.  Hazare also cautioned the government to fulfil all the promises it had made before the polls or else every passing day will be a “loss”.

In an apparent reference to the need for agitation for implementation of OROP, Hazare said Lokpal Bill was passed only after protests in the Ramlila Maidan and this government is also not ready to implement OROP.  

Charging the Centre with not fulfiling even a single promise made during pre-elections rallies last for Lok Sabha polls, he said, “at that time they had assured that we will give priority to fight against corruption. Wherever you go corruption has increased and inflation has risen. So much assurances were given and not a single has been fulfilled.” Continuing his attack on the NDA government, he said, another promise that farmers cost will 50 per cent more than the production cost.

“What about the black money? You had said every person will get Rs 15 lakh money in their bank account. If you think that you have majority and no one can harm you. If this is your thought, then every single passing day will be a loss for you.

You will suffer losses,” Hazare said.  Incidentally, Hazare has also protested against the Land Amendment Bill early this year.

Criticising the demand for a hike in salary for the MPs, Hazare said, they get several benefits but the widows of the defence personnel get only a meagre sum.  He also raised concerns over the disruptions in the Parliament.

“Have you seen the people sitting in the Parliament. The Parliament is not functioning for the past five days. How much does it take to run the Parliament for a day. Whose money is that? It's mine and your money and these people are busy fighting.

“Air fare, Railway's Class AC 1 ticket, bungalow, vehicle, Rs 50,000 salary. Still you are saying it is not sufficient and asking for a hike. And we have our wives and mothers of the defence personnel who get Rs 3,500-Rs 4,500. Is this justice and is this our freedom? Will we call this democracy,” he said.

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