NFFU And Its Likely Effect On Pay And Pensions Of Armed Forces...

NFFU And Its Likely Effect On Pay And Pensions Of Armed Forces Officers

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Dear All,
       Many retired officers are seeking my views on NFFU (Non Functional Financial Upgradation) as if I am an authority on it. I am as clueless as any of you about this creature NFFU created very intelligently by IAS lobby in 6th CPC and are enjoying the benefit of getting higher pay for doing lower job. In Army parlance Lt Col getting pay of Lt Gen for doing the job of Lt Col.
      Now the retired officers are asking me how it is going to benefit pensioners. Before that we must know how it is going to benefit serving soldiers.
      Assured Career Progression (ACP).As you know some sort of NFFU is given to NCOs & JCOs in the form of Assured Career Progression (ACP) since Jan 2006. ACP is if a Sepoy is not promoted after putting in 8 years’ service, he gets pay of Naik but does the duties of Sepoy (and does not wear the rank of Naik). If the same Sepoy is not promoted after putting in 16 years’ service he gets pay of Havildar but does the duties of Sepoy. If he manages to serve for 24 years (only administrative trades may be able to serve for 24 year but I am not very sure!!) then he gets pay of Nb Sub but performs the duties of Sepoy. This bonanza came not because Govt of India was fond of faujis but it is because it was granted to Central Govt Civilian Employees at 10, 20 and 30 years’ service.
            Similarly in Army we have AEC (Army Education Corps) soldiers. They are graduates and some of them are Beds too. They are recruited directly as Havildars. Such Havildars will get pay promotion after 8 years’ service as Nb Sub and after 16 years’ service get pay of Sub and after 24 years’ service get pay of Sub Maj but performing duties of Hav only.
       In Army, we have Religious Teachers such as Panditjis, Gianiji, Maulviji, Padre if the religious group is 120 in a Unit. We in Bombay Sappers have Panditji for Hindus and Gianiji for Sikh troops. They are recruited as Directly Entry JCOs i.e. Nb Subs. They are also given the same benefit under ACP and retire with benefit of higher pay though they may be only Nb Sub all their Army career.
     NFFU in Civil Services. In Civil Group A services rules are different for IAS/IFS and other 52 Group A services. If an IAS officer of a batch say 2001 is empanelled as Joint Secretary to the Govt of India then all his batch mates (of 2001) draw pay of Joint Secy though they may be performing duties one rank lower i.e. Director. Even if a guy is not found fit by promotion board to become Joint Secy he draws pay of Joint Secy because someone in his batch has become a Joint Secretary to Govt of India. In a similar manner if IAS officer of 2001 batch becomes a Addl Secy all 2001 batch IAS officers draw pay of Addl Secy though they may be performing duties of Director or Joint Secretary.
     NFFU for Non – IAS Officers.  IAS officers are given two year edge over other Group A Services. So a 2001 batch IAS Officer is empanelled to the rank of Joint Secretary to Govt of India all other Non – IAS Group A officers will be paid salary of Joint Secy two years after 2001 batch IAS officer is empanelled as Joint Secy i.e. 1999 non – IAS officers will start getting pay of Joint Secy the day 2001 batch IAS Officer is empanelled as Joint Secy.
      I am not very sure whether Principal Bench of AFT, New Delhi gave out how NFFU is to be implemented for Armed Forces Officers. If Central Govt has already implemented NFFU for CAPFs then the same method may be adopted for Armed Forces Officers.
    How Does it Affect pre – 2006 Retired Officers? As per OROP all retired officers will get same pension or pension equalisation after every five years. Since the judgment of AFT New Delhi says NFFU is to be paid with arrears from three years from date of filing the case i.e. w.e.f. 2012, it may affect all pre – 2006 Officers as our pensions have been equated with those who retired in 2013. That is if an officer retired in 2012,  with benefit of NFFU his pension will go up at the time of retirement. I assume if a Colonel retires in 2012 and his course mate is Maj Gen then applying IAS principle then the Colonel also should get pay of Maj Gen at the time of retirement. Then in 2013 OROP kicks in. So all pre – 2006 officers of that rank will also get pension of Maj Gen.
     NFFU also forces officers to stay put in the service even if they are superseded. If an officer takes PMR then he loses the benefit of NFFU as his batch mate might not yet got his promotion as Brigadier. To get benefit of NFFU one has to be in service and pray that his course mate becomes a Lt Gen (which in any case one in the batch will definitely become). Cols retire at the age of 54 years. So they have got maximum 33 years of service (if commissioned at the age of 21 years as is happening now with minimum education qualification being 12th std to get into NDA) or 34 years’ service (for oldies). Generally Gen cadre officers become Lt Gens in 34 to 35 years’ service. That means Cols can hope to get pension of Maj Gen or few lucky ones may get pension of Lt Gen.
    But this is my conjecture. I have not read the judgment of AFT (PB) New Delhi. I could be totally wrong. So do not go by my wild thinking. But one thing I am sure is all pre – 2006 retired Officers will definitely benefit by NFFU.
warm regards,
Brig CS Vidyasagar (Retd)
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