New Delhi, July 6 (IANS) Scores of ex-servicemen braved rain on Monday to continue with a relay fast to protest against the delay in implementation of their demand for ‘One Rank One Pension’.

The ex-servicemen were hopeful of a meeting with Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar soon, said Col. Anil Kaul (retd), spokesman of the United Front of Ex-Servicemen Morcha(UFESM).

“We are waiting for an appointment; it may be on Tuesday or Wednesday,” the retired officer told IANS.

The ex-servicemen are demanding that the central government give them a definite date for OROP implementation. They also demanded that the nature of the scheme should not be changed.

The veterans started their protest in the national capital on June 14, and began a relay hunger strike from June 15.

Currently, the pension for retired defence forces personnel is based on the pay commission recommendations prevalent at the time of his/her retirement.

This leads to a difference in pensions of officers of the same rank who retire on different dates.

Under OROP, retired personnel would draw same pensions as officers and jawans of the same rank who are retiring now.

They would also be entitled to a year’s back pensions at the new rate, which would be a windfall for pensioners.

OROP will benefit 25 lakh ex-servicemen. It is expected to cost the government around Rs.8,500 crore.

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