Source: News Bharati English22 Sep 2016 09:19:50
New Delhi, September 21: The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave its ex-post facto approval to enhancement of Pension for Freedom Fighters and for the spouses (widows/widowers), eligible daughters and dependent parents of deceased Freedom Fighters, under the Swatantrata Sainik Samman Pension Scheme (SSSPS), 1980.
The existing pension scheme (i.e. Present amount of pension and Enhanced amount of pension) for Central freedom fighter pensioners and their eligible dependents has been restructured as follows: Ex-Andaman Political Prisoners/ spouses will be allotted Pension And Enhancement of Rs. 24,775 &Rs. 30,000 respectively, similarly, Freedom fighters who suffered outside British India/spouses will be given Rs. 23,085 &Rs. 28,000; Other Freedom Fighters / spouses including INA will get Rs. 21,395 & Rs. 26,000 and Dependent parents/eligible daughters (maximum 3 daughters at any point of time) Rs. 3,380. 50% of the sum that would have been admissible to the Freedom Fighter i.e. in the range of Rs. 13,000 to Rs. 15,000
(i) The revised scale of pension has taken effect from 15.O8.2016. Further, the revised total amount of pension will be taken as basic pension for the respective categories of Freedom Fighter pensioners for calculating Dearness Relief.
(ii) The existing Dearness Relief system based on All India Consumer Price Index for Industrial workers, which was so far applicable to freedom fighter pensioners on annual basis, is being discontinued and replaced by the Dearness Allowance system applicable to Central Government employees twice a year. This will be termed as "Dearness Relief”, the appropriate term in case of pensioners.
All freedom fighters and spouses and dependent parents/eligible daughter pensioners of deceased freedom fighters drawing pension under the Swatantrata Sainik Samman Pension Scheme, 1980 would be benefitted by the decision.
Government of India introduced in 1969, the 'Ex-Andaman Political Prisoners Pension Scheme' to honor the freedom fighters who had been incarcerated in the Cellular Jail at Port Blair. In order to commemorate the 25th Anniversary of Independence in 1972, a regular scheme for grant of freedom fighters' pension was introduced.
Thereafter, with effect from 1.8.1980, a liberalized scheme, the Swatantrata Sainik Samman Pension Scheme’ is being implemented. Besides the freedom fighters, spouses (widows. Widowers), unmarried and unemployed daughters (up to maximum three at any point of time) and parents of deceased freedom fighters are eligible for pension under the Scheme.
Till 2016, a total of 1, 71,605 freedom fighters and their eligible dependents have been sanctioned pension under the scheme. At present, 37,981 freedom fighters and their eligible dependent pensioners are covered under the scheme. Out of these, 11,690 are freedom fighters themselves, 24,792 are spouses (widows/ widowers) and 1,490 are daughter pensioners. Instructions have been issued to all the authorized banks for ensuring Aadhar linked disbursement of Freedom Fighter pension as early as possible.