Ministry of Defense plans uniform retirement age for Army, Navy & Air Force, more years of service
New Delhi: With pensions and salaries largest expenditure factor of the defense budget, the Department of Military Affairs (DMA) is in the process of completing an increase in the retirement age and an alignment of the various officer ranks in the three services.
Once those changes are in place, the concept of reinstatement in the armed forces will also fall, said defense and security establishment sources ThePrint, adding that the Lack of officers will also reduce.
The sources said that work is also being done to streamline re-hiring responsibilities so that re-hired officials can work at the same level as their rank, rather than the current practice where the official’s salary is his or her responsibilities : of much lower rank.
Sources said rising pension and payroll bills were a cause for concern because it meant that while the defense budget itself is large in number, the actual spending on modernization is less.
India was the third largest defense spending in the world after the US and China earlier this year. India ranks ahead of Russia, on which it is heavily dependent for armaments.
Sources said the main problem was with the Colonel rank as the three services have different age limits, with the Indian Air Force having two different age limits depending on whether or not one is in the âflying industryâ.
In the army, a senior officer retires at age 54. In the Navy, his counterpart, a captain, retires at the age of 56. In the IAF, their counterpart is a group captain. If a group captain is of the “flying branch” they retire at the age of 54, while all non-flying group captains retire at 56.
While a brigadier in the Army and a Commodore in the Navy retire at the age of 56, their counterpart in the IAF (Air Commodore) has a retirement age of 56 or 58 years, depending on whether he comes from the aviation industry or not.
While a major general officer retires at 58, rear admirals in the Navy retire at 58, and the retirement age for Air Vice Marshals is 59.
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Ensure consistency of services
âThe biggest problem are the colonels in the army, as their retirement age is much earlier. A total of around 1,000 officers retire or retire annually. Most of them are usually from the ranks of lieutenant colonel and colonel, alongside brigades. Many of them are also applying for reinstatement, which is usually given, “said a Defense Department source.
The source further stated that when a colonel or brigadier is accepted for reinstatement, the responsibility entrusted to him is that of at least two ranks below.
âEvery year nine brigadiers are free in the BSF. When a brigadier joins the BSF, they are posted as a DIG, which is generally considered to be the equivalent of a brigadier. He receives the salary of a brigadier and only works as a brigadier. In the army, the brigadier is given responsibilities that are actually given to an officer with the rank of lieutenant colonel in staff duties, âthe source said.
The idea of ââthe DMA, led by General Bipin Rawat, is to ensure that even if the force is reinstated, they get the most out of the process by ensuring that officials continue to work at the same level.
Setting the retirement age together for all three services also ensures consistency and eliminates officer strength shortages.
A DMA note in October last year about the planned new pension policy had caused severe heartburn in the military, with indications that the three services were not on board.
However, the greatest concern at the time was the proposed changes to the pension rights of those seeking early release (PMR).
(Edited by Poulomi Banerjee)
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