DEFENCE MINISTER ACCEPTS PUNJAB CM’S PLEA TO REVOKE CAP ON EDUCATIONAL CONCESSION FOR KIDS OF MARTYRS & DISABLED SOLDIERS
CAPT AMARINDER WELCOMES DECISION AS STEP TOWARDS BOOSTING MORALE OF THE FORCES
Chandigarh, May 2:
The Central Government has acceded to Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh’s personal request not to cap the educational concession provided to children of Armed Forces Officers/Personnel Below Officer Ranks (PBORs), killed/missing/permanently disabled in action.
Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has written to the Chief Minister to convey the Union Government’s decision to continue the said concession without capping it at Rs. 10,000 per month.
The Chief Minister has welcomed the decision to reverse the cap, saying it would go a long way towards boosting the morale of the armed forces and their families, particularly the children of martyrs and disabled soldiers, to whom the nation owed its security and sovereignty.
The Defence Minister’s communication is in response to Captain Amarinder’s D.O letter dated December 1, 2017, urging her to revoke the decision to put a cap of Rs. 10,000 per month on the combined amount of tuition fee and hostel charges under the scheme of educational concession to such children. Expressing serious concern about the proposed move of the Defence Ministry, the Chief Minister had then said it would make a mockery of the objective behind the scheme which was announced in the Lok Sabha in 1971.
Captain Amarinder felt it would undermine the sacrifice of the defence personnel, and amounted to a shameful disregard for the contribution of the armed personnel to the country and its citizens. He was of the opinion that the fee being paid to the children of martyrs and disabled soldiers was a small price in exchange for what they had given, and continued to give, to the nation.
The educational concession was initially being given to the children of armed forces personnel killed/missing or permanently disabled in 1962, 1965, 1971 wars, Operation Pawan and Operation Meghdoot. However, on August 6, 2003, the Defence Ministry had extended the concession to the children of armed forces personnel who were killed/declared missing or permanently disabled during all post Meghdoot operations in India and aboard, including counter insurgency operation, studying in Govt/Govt aided schools/educational institutes, military sainik schools and other schools or colleges recognized by the Central or State Govts including the autonomous organizations financed entirely by Central/State Govts.