All India BSNL Pensioners' Welfare Association.

Archives-News

07/04

28/03

Former communication Minister, Shri Beni Prasad Verma, expired at Lucknow on 27-3-2020 at the age of 79 years. I had the opportunity to meet this strange personality three times when he was the MoC. First time, it was in office. Second time was also on my request only. But it was arranged at his residence at 10.30 in the night. After the meeting I had to walk about 45 minutes to my residence at Gole Market. Third time his PA asked me if I could meet the minister at 11 PM in the night! I told that I have to walk both ways. Then Shri Verma himself came over the phone and asked something. I could not follow his Hindi. Then he sent his car and I met him at 11.15 PM. Offering black tea, he was asking about expansion of PCO network. After that discussion he asked some questions about Shree Narayana Guru , the social reformer of Kerala.

On that day I requested him to raise the amount being given to Sanchar Sarathi awardees. Within few days, surprising all, in the function giving away the awards, he announced that the amount is raised to Rupees ONE LAKH, including those who received award on that day. That was Sh. Beni Prasad Vermaji.

He often created controversy making some statements. We convey our condolences on the demise of this former MoC .... PSR

26/03

Today, 26-3-2020, BSNL Corporate Office has issued instructions to make ad-hoc payment of Ex-gratia to those whose cases have been verified by BSNL.

On 18-3-2020, the CMD had a meting with staff union leaders. CMD informed that out of 78569 optees 199 people died. 1767 cases were pending with BSNL on that day. All the rest were forwarded to DoT. That means 76603 cases were sent by BSNL. But, only 26370 PPOs were issued. What about the remaining 50233 cases?

The CO order dated 26-3-2020 is attached here. click her to see the order. adhoc-exgratia.pdf


26/03

WITH HEAVY HEARTS WE REPORT DEATH OF COM. SHER SINGH,
THE FORMER CIRCLE SECRETARY OF OUR UP WEST CIRCLE ON 23-3-2020 AT MEERUT.
HE HAD SOME CARDIAC PROBLEM, AS REPORTED BY OUR AGS COM. J S DAHYA.
CHQ CONVEYS ITS DEEPEST CONDOLENCES ON THE DEMISE OF COM. SHER SINGH.


07/04

23/03

Our CHQ has taken up the above matter with Director (HR), BSNL.

Click here to see the Letter

ltr-to-dr-hr.pdf


19/03


Some comrades have forwarded to me a newspaper report stating that Kerala High Court ordered that income tax cannot be levied on ex gratia amount paid to VRS optees. From the news item (in Hindi), I could understand that it was a judgement delivered by Justice K S Radhakrishnan and Justice K T Sankaran of Kerala High court in a case between SBI and Income tax department.

With that clue, I traced the Kerala High court judgement and found that it is an old case. The said judgement was delivered on 8-12-2005, 14 years ago.

I know nothing of Income tax rules and cannot offer any comment on it. From the last two paragraphs of the judgement (The full judgement is attached hereunder) I understand that VRS people are entitled to get Income tax relief under section 89(1) of Income Tax Act in addition to the reliefs under Section 10(10C) (viii).

Those who are interested in the matter may please study the judgement and use it, if beneficial…. P S Ramankutty

The judgement: vrs-it-sbi-case.htm


19/03

The Supreme Court on March 18 launched an unprecedented tongue-lashing at mobile phone operators for self-assessing their outstanding telecom dues, saying the action was a clear violation of its rulings on the matter.

Hearing the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) plea on the adjusted gross revenue (AGR) case, a bench of the Supreme Court of India held that no further objections to its orders would be allowed against payable dues.

In its order, the three-judge bench led by Justice Arun Mishra, and comprising Justices S Abdul Nazeer and MR Shah held that no self-assessment can be done and no further objection would be entertained. “All dues as per our judgement will have to be paid, including interest and penalty. The Solicitor General had filed a plea seeking reasonable time, we will consider this plea on the next date,” the order stated. [NEWS ITEM]


16/03

UP EAST CIRCLE CONFERENCE WAS HELD AT GORAKHPUR ON 15-3-2020.

COM. BABU RAM (KANPUR), COM. J N DUBEY(LUCKNOW) AND COM. DHANIRAM VERMA (LUCKNOW) ARE ELECTED AS CIRCLE PRESIDENT, SECRETARY AND TREASURER RESPECTIVELY.




16/03

BOKARO - DHANBAD


PATTANCHERU TELANGANA

VILLIVAKKAM CHENNAI: CROSSED 1000 LIFE MEMBERS

14/03

14/03

14/03

13/03



DELHI CIRCLE

BHAVNAGAR GUJ


BHIMAVARAM AP

CHIDAMBARAM TN


JALANDHAR PB

STR CHENNAI


CHENNAI STR


CHENNAI TFC.


TUNI EG AP


VELLORE TN



10/03

09/03




LET THE LIGHT OF HOLI KILL VIRUS OF CORONA

AND SAVE THE PEOPLE OF OUR COUNTRY.

HOLI GREETINGS TO ALL.

08/03


SHE…..


She is Mother, She is Sister, She is Wife, She is Daughter, She is Daughter in law,

She is THE HOME MAKER, the new designation.

WITH NO PAY, WITH NO APPRECIATION, and, WITH NO RECOGNITION

TODAY IS THE DAY FOR HER AND HER CLASS.
THE UNPAID WOMENFOLK, IN INDIA, ANYWHERE IN THIS WORLD


OUR GREETINGS TO ALL ON THIS
INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY.




07/03

Some of the CWC members expressed their concern about the corona virus situation. Appreciating their concern we have postponed the CWC meeting scheduled for 15-16, March.

Gorakhpur comrades have paid a huge amount as advance for food and accommodation. They are negotiating with the concerned people to save that money. Gorakhpur comrades have intimated that same venue will be available for 27-28, May 2020. They have booked it.

Rooms will be available from 26, May to 29 May 2020.

So, all CWC members are requested to reschedule your travel programme so as to reach Gorakhpur on 26-5-2020.

............................... P Gangadhara Rao, GS.

7-3-2020, 9.30 PM

04/03

VRS Optees of SBI are entitled to Pension:Supreme Court

The Supreme Court has held that employees of State Bank of India who have taken voluntary retirement as per the 2000 VRS scheme after 15 or more years of service as on the cut-off date are entitled to proportionate pension as per SBI Pension Fund Rules.

A 3-judge bench comprising Justices Arun Mishra, M R Shah and BR Gavai held so while answering a reference following conflicting of views between judges regarding admissibility of pension under VRS.

The question was whether employees who opted for VRS after putting in pensionable service were entitled to pension as well under the SBI Pension Fund Rules.

Background
On December 27, 2000, the Central Board of State Bank of India approved the VRS scheme proposed by the Indian Banks Association, as per which any employee with 15 years of service was eligible. It is relevant to note that as per SBI Pension Fund Rules, an employee was eligible for pension only on completion of 20 years of service.

In this backdrop, Deputy Managing Director ­cum ­CDO of SBI issued a clarification on January 15, 2001 that as per the existing rules, employees who had not completed 20 years of pensionable service were not eligible for pension.

One Radhey Shyam Pandey, who opted for VRS after 19 years, nine months, and 18 days of pensionable service, was denied pension as per Rules on the ground that he had not completed 20 years of service. There were several other employees who were in the same situation as Radhey Shyam Pandey. They approached the High Courts, which ruled in their favour. Challenging the HC verdicts, the SBI came in appeal.

Action of state instrumentality cannot violate Art 14

The bench observed that SBI ,being an instrumentality of State under Article 12, is bound by the principle of fairness.

The judgment authored by Justice Arun Mishra stated :

"The VRS scheme was not floated by the SBI on its own volition. It was pursuant to an exercise that was undertaken by the IBA in view of the recent developments of modern technology considering the age group of the employees in the bank, the need to have a new skill, and to rationalise the manpower; a decision was taken. It was decided at the Government level to provide pension after completion of 15 years of service as a special measure, the banks were bound to implement it in that manner or not at all. The Central Board of Directors of the SBI accepted the VRS proposal of Government and IBA without any reservation of not providing pension along with other benefits, as mandated in the VRS scheme. The action of the instrumentality of the State cannot be violative of Article 14. It cannot be permitted to act arbitrarily. Articles 15 and 16 provide for equality and provide for an umbrella against discrimination"
The bench noted that the clarification issued by the Deputy Manager cannot be regarded as an amendment or modification of scheme.

It was observed :

"Once the memorandum containing the IBAs proposal of providing pension was approved in absolute terms, the clarification could not be of any value to dilute the otherwise clear and unambiguous resolution of the Board of Directors. The Deputy General Manager did not have any such wide and arbitrary power to defeat the claim of the employees for pension on completion of 15 years of permanent service, which was their right. The action of D.G.M. could not be said to be in accordance with the resolution. The pension was the essence of the scheme, depriving it could not be said to be authorised, such action can only be termed as unfair and unreasonable and patently violative of Articles 14, 16, and 21 of the Constitution of India".

Bank cannot wriggle out of the obligation

The Court held that the VRS scheme, once approved by the Board of Directors of SBI, became a contract enforceable by law. The rights under contract cannot be taken away, and they become enforceable by a court of law. Bank cannot be permitted to make a representation and later on wriggle out of its obligation.

The Court added that even if two interpretations were possible, the interpretation benefiting the employee should be adopted.

Principle of socialism is to secure working people in the fall of life

The Court observed that pension cannot be denied in an arbitrary and unfair manner, as it was a measure of security for a retired employee during old days.

The principal aim of the socialist State as envisaged in the Preamble is to eliminate inequality, the Court added.

It observed :

"The basic framework of socialism is to provide security in the fall of life to the working people and especially provides security from the cradle to the grave when employees have rendered service in heydays of life, they cannot be destituted in old age, by taking action in an arbitrary manner and for omission to complete obligation assured one".


In conclusion, the Court said :

"we are of the opinion that the employees who completed 15 years of service or more as on cut­off date were entitled to proportionate pension under SBI VRS to be computed as per SBI Pension Fund Rules. Let the benefits be extended to all such similar employees retired under VRS on completion of 15 years of service without requiring them to rush to the court."

The Court however chose not to burden the bank with interest. The order has to be complied with and arrears be paid within three months, failing which amount to carry interest at the rate of 6 per cent per annum from the date of the order....