The Supreme Court on Monday granted time till March 15 to the Centre for payment of arrears of One Rank-One Pension (OROP) to all eligible pensioners of the armed forces.
A bench of Chief Justice D.Y. Chandrachud and Justice P.S. Narasimha asked the Centre to ensure that all arrears are paid expeditiously to the pensioners of the armed forces and that there is no further delay.
The top court granted ex-servicemen association the liberty to file an application if they feel aggrieved by any action of the Centre on payment of arrears.
Attorney-general R. Venkataramani, appearing for the Centre, said the tabulation process has been completed by the Comptroller General of Defence Accounts and now the tables have been sent to the defence ministry for approval.
“By March 15, the money will start flowing into the accounts of 25 lakh pensioners of the armed forces,” he said.
Last month, the government moved the top court seeking an extension till March 15, 2023 for payment of arrears of OROP scheme.
This is the second extension given by the top court to the Union government to pay the arrears after it had first moved the top court in June last year and sought three months to compute and make payments in accordance with the March 16, 2022 verdict of the top court.
The top court’s 2022 verdict came on the plea filed by the Indian Ex-servicemen Movement (IESM) through advocate Balaji Srinivasan against the Centre’s formula.
It had said in terms of the communication dated November 7, 2015, the benefit of OROP was to be effected from July 1, 2014, and the communication states that “in future, the pension would be re-fixed every five years”.