A meeting was conducted on 03 Oct 2023 in the Adjutant General’s Branch for briefing on the recently issued ‘Disability Policy’ letter. The meeting was chaired by the Adjutant General.
The COP, the AOP, the DG Medical Services, IFA and other officers from personnel and finance were also present. The meeting was called at short notice. Members of the recognised Ex-Servicemen Association attended. AVM HP Singh, National Senior Vice President and Brig Vinod Batra, National Secy from ABPSSP attended.
The following points were stressed and clarified :-
1. The new policy will not be applicable to personal retired prior to 21 September 23.
2. There are no changes from the existing policy except some consolidation of various policy letters issued from time to time and some changes to bring greater clarity.
3. Impairment relief is applicable to personnel retained in service after disability.
4. Capitalisation of impairment relief applies to those retained in service. They can choose to take a capitalised amount which is calculated based on a formula or take disability as part of their pension on normal retirement.
5. There is no change in the disability benefits to those who are in receipt of the same.
But it has been noticed that the definition of invalided out of service which has been changed in the New Entitlement Rule 2023 has not been covered. Earlier those retired were unwilling to accept sheltered appointments treated as invalided out of service. Whereas, in the new ER, such discharge has been deleted from the list of invalided out of service.
So, it can be assumed that such discharge will be treated as “Discharge at Own Request”. But Pension Regulations for the Army 2008, part -I, regs 95 provides that if discharged at your own request, service element is not entitled. So, it may be adversely affected to the persons opted unwilling to accept sheltered appointments with less that 15 years of service as they will not be any service element.
Moreover, applicability of Impairment relief as described in the New Rule is for all retired personnel except those invalided out of service. So, a normally retiring person/PMR will not get disability element, rather he will be entitled to get service pension along with Impairment Relief (IR). In the meeting it has not been clear if DR is applicable on the IR or not.
So, we should wait until detailed clarification is given by the MoD on every issue. PCDA should publish a detailed application of this rules for LMC persons those retiring on or after 21 Sep 2023.