The Defence Minister Shri AK Antony today asked senior Defence Finance officials of his Ministry to consider the satisfaction level of Ex-Servicemen (ESM) pensioners as the benchmark of their performance. Addressing the 264th Annual Day Celebration of the Defence Accounts Department (DAD) here today, Shri Antony pointed out that his office still continues to receive several pension settlement related grievances.
â€œTrue, most of these cases were a baggage from the past as a consequence of Pay Commission recommendations and Cabinet decision on pay and pension hike, yet these needed to be addressed at the shortest possible time,â€ Shri Antony said. â€œUltimately, the taste of the pudding lies in its eating,â€ he quipped adding that â€œthe veterans deserved their due as they had sacrificed the prime of their life safeguarding our borders.â€
The Defence Minister hoped that the two IT projects â€˜Sangamâ€™, for pension payment, and â€˜Dolphinâ€™ related to monthly pay system for the Other Ranks (OR) in Army, will facilitate quick disbursal of dues to the serving ORs and ESM. â€œYou must strive to provide enhanced customer satisfaction through hassle-free service and prompt and accurate payment of dues to the soldiers and their dependents.â€ Project â€˜Sanghamâ€™ has fulfilled a long-pending demand of our ESM.
Commending the DAD for launching of its two IT projects â€“ â€˜Vishwakâ€™ and â€˜Bhawanâ€™, Shri Antony said, â€œYou should strive to utilise this advantage to assist the Services in achieving their goals.â€ Underlining the need for transparency in accounting procedures, the Defence Minister observed, â€œIn todayâ€™s era of globalisation, accountability has acquired new connotations. Accountability is no longer restricted to quantitative techniques and financial inputs and outputs. It has become an integral part of good governance, with several aspects like integrity, transparency, responsiveness and sustainability becoming a part and parcel.â€
On the occasion, the Shri Antony also presented the Raksha Mantriâ€™s Awards for Excellence for the year 2011. The Excellence Award for Software Development was bagged by CGDA (IT Wing Team) headed by Shri S Murali Krishnan, which has developed Project â€˜Suvigyaâ€™ (Pension inquiry system), Project â€˜Aashraya (pension disbursement system) and Project â€˜Darpanâ€™ (Defence Accounts Receipts and Payments Analyses). CDA Secunderabad, Secunderabad team headed by Shri Y Rajareddy was awarded the Excellence Award for Project â€˜Dophinâ€™, an online PBOR Monthly Pay System. PCDA (Central Command) team headed by Shri HH Mishra also bagged the Excellence Award for launching of Monthly Pay System and its implementation on all Pay Accounts Offices.
Secretary, Ex-Servicemen Welfare, Shrimati Neelam Nath, Controller General of Defence Accounts (CGDA) Shri Nand Kishore and Additional CGDA Ms UG Antony were among the dignitaries present at the function.