Thursday, November 11, 2010

Secretary Genl. BPS Visits Ministry of Railways (Railway Board) to Solve Rly Pensioners Problems

Secretary Genl. BPS  Visits Ministry of Railways (Railway Board) to Solve Rly Pensioners Problems

On 10.11.2010 Sh. Shyam Sunder Secretary Genl. BPS along with S.C.Maheshwari Secy.(Railway) BPS & S.P. Bhardwaj Vice president RREWA Gurgaon visited Rly. Board to sort out following  issues with reference to earlier representation by Bharat Pensioners Samaj.

1. Revision of Pension after 14 years to the disadvantage of Pensioners in case of pre 1996 retirees from the IV CPC Scale of Rs 1400-2300 corresponding Vth CPC Scale of 5000-8000 by Southern Railways, N.Rly Jagadhari Work Shop & Western Railway.

2. Inordinate delay in issuing revised PPOs to pre 2006 retirees.

3. Harassment to Secondary pensioners (i.e. Unmarried /widowed/ divorced dependent daughters & differently abled dependent sons) in sanctioning family pension on their turn.
4. Denial of medical facilities to Secondary pensioners & the minor dependent children of divorced daughter.
5. Denial accepting revised dependency criteria of
Rs3500 Plus DR
in Railways medical department.
6. Issuing Smart Cards to all RELHS beneficiaries covering general emergencies with all India validity
7. Raising the monetary limit of lab. Investigations.
8.Recognition of Private hospitals at Dheradoon.

Items 1to 3 were discussed with the Finance Commissioner Ministry of Railway. Who happens to be very Sympathetic & Considerate to Pensioners problems. Regarding item No1 after the case was explained with the support of relevant documents F.C. candidly agreed that gross injustice appears to being done .He took copies of the concerned documents which were not put up to him inspite of being forwarded earlier  by DOP &PW and promised suitable action..
Regarding Item no 2 F.C. himself was concerned over the delay & informed that he is a seized of the problem and some thing concrete will be done shortly
Regarding  item3. F.C. agreed to issue a checklist to be followed on Indian Railways uniformly.

Items pertaining to the directorate and were to be discussed with DG(RHS).However as D.G. was busy elsewhere he nominated ED (G) Health. Dr. B.N.Annigeri to discuss the issues on his behalf..
With reference to item No 4 &5 ED informed that action on the earlier representations of BPS was being taken and that the issues will be favorably decided very soon.
Regarding item 6 issue of smart card: When ED informed that they result of N.Rly Pilot project were not encouraging He was informed of the following reasons
  1. N.Rly Smart card Pilot project covers only Cardiac ,Cancer & dialysis emergencies and only Delhi’s empanelled hospitals are included ,other empanelled hospitals of NCR are left out  2.Too much of hassle was involved in issuing the cards which could not reach beneficiaries before the expiry date in the first year. In the second year cards were revalidated just 4months before the expiry date of 31st August. In the Third year i.e the current year 2010 cards have not been revalidated till today i.e.10.11.2010 & that there is no information whether these will be revalidated or not.
It was explained that if the glitches are removed and all medical emergencies are included, smart card will be very useful & popular among RELHS beneficiaries over the Indian Railways. Though  E.D promised to look into the matter  & to do needful to remove the glitches ,We at Bharat Pensioners Samaj feel that the administration of NRCH who is managing the Smart card Project, for obvious reasons, is a averse to loosing its powers of denying timely treatment to pensioners even in emergencies and is there fore doing its best to fail the Smart Card Pilot Project.

Regarding item 7 & 8 E D took a note for follow up.

The successful visit of Secy. Genl. BPS ended with a very good cup of coffee with Mr D. Mazumdar JDE (Welfare) Rly Board.

Secy. (Rly.)  B.P.S

Govt responsible for welfare of ex-servicemen: Patil

Chandigarh, Nov 11 (PTI) Punjab Governor Shivraj Patil has said that the government machinery is responsible for welfare of ex-servicemen.

Patil, who was presiding over the 31st meeting of Rajya Sainik Board asked the officers present in the meeting to restructure their programmes and involve maximum ex-servicemen and students in their development projects.

"We owe a great debt to soldiers who have spent prime of their lives for protecting boundaries and maintaining peace.

Therefore, it is our collective responsibility and duty to ensure them a life of dignity, self respect and assure that the nation and its people are behind them," he said.

The Governor said necessary instructions should be issued to
CDA (Pension) by the concerned department to ensure revision of pensions under intimation to concerned banks.

Section 498A of the Indian Penal Code was introduced to curb dowry. Did the legislature ignore unintended (though foreseeable) consequences?
To understand how the “Dowry law” is being misused and abused, let us first see what exactly it says. Section 498A of the Indian Penal Code makes it a criminal offence for the husband (or a relative of the husband) of a woman to subject such woman to cruelty. Anyone found guilty of this offence may be imprisoned for up to three years and may also be made to pay a fine.
Further, this offence is non-bailable, which means that bail is not granted automatically, but the accused has to appear in court in order to obtain bail. This offence is also non-compoundable which means that the parties cannot settle it between themselves by withdrawing the complaint, once a case is filed: the police will see it through till the end. The offence is cognizable implying that an arrest can be made even without a warrant once a formal complaint is filed. A typical dowry harassment case can go on for up to 5-7 years.

What is cruelty?

Section 498A explains the meaning of cruelty in detail. We have provided a brief summary below:
  1. conduct which could drive a woman to commit suicide or to cause herself grave injury or danger (whether physical or mental); or
  2. harassment of the woman with a view to coercing her (or any person related to her) for dowry demands or because she or her family are not able to meet such demands
Cruelty therefore is defined very broadly and covers mental, emotional and physical abuse and the demand for dowry. Only a wife or daughter-in-law can invoke this law against her husband or in-laws.

How is this law misused?

Even though this law was drafted keeping in mind the need to protect vulnerable women from dowry demands, this law has also been abused. Why is this so?
Since Section 498A is highly pro-women, some women use this law as a blackmailing tool or threat against their husbands or in-laws, whether for emotional, or financial gains. In some rare cases, the girl or girl’s family agrees to
  • the marriage is only with the intention of using this law against the groom’s family and making some money at their expense.
  • Anyone the woman names in her complaint can be arrested. In most cases, arrests are made even before any investigation happens. The onus lies on the accused since he/she is presumed guilty until proven otherwise.
  • There is no punishment for a false complaint (not even a fine). This has made this law more prone to misuse.
  • According to studies, many men who come from the USA and marry Indian girls have been on the receiving end of this law. This happens when the women are denied their immigrant visas and are looking for an easy way out of their marriages.
One of the most publicized cases of misuse of dowry laws was that of Dr. Balamurli, Ambati, a prodigy who became the world’s youngest doctor at age 17, in 1995. He and his family were arrested under a false dowry demand complaint made by his brother’s wife. They were residents of the US but were detained in India for three years, leading to a two-year delay in Balamurli’s residency (i.e., a professional milestone). The case ended after three years when the family produced a video recording of the bride’s father demanding $500,000 to close the case.
The Government has introduced the Criminal Law (Amendment) Bill, 2003, which seeks to make the offence under Section 498A IPC compoundable with the permission of the Court. Whether this will go through remains to be seen as the number of genuine dowry cases far outnumber the abuses of the law.

Fines and Penalties

The penalty for taking or giving dowry is:
  • imprisonment for not less than 5 years; and
  • a fine of Rs. 15,000 or the amount of dowry demanded, whichever is higher.
Penalty for asking or demanding, directly or indirectly, for dowry is:
  • imprisonment of a minimum of two months and a maximum of 2 years; and
  • a fine of Rs. 10,000.
There is no period of limitation to file a dowry case. This means that you can file a case for dowry related harassment any amount of time after the event has actually taken place.

Courtesy:Ankur & his Team
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