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Senior citizens protest at Andhra Pradesh Government cutting pensions

Senior citizens protest at Andhra Pradesh Government cutting pensions
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For representational purpose
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Kakinada: Government of Andhra Pradesh which has been showing enormous sympathy for the economically downtrodden is little concerned about the plight o...

Kakinada: Government of Andhra Pradesh which has been showing enormous sympathy for the economically downtrodden is little concerned about the plight of the retired pensioners. The pensioners have been subjected to 50 percent cut in their meagre pension with an impending threat to continue its slashing for some more months till further orders. It is obvious that Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy as well as bureaucrats are insensitive to the woes and plight of these neglected forlorn category of people. There are GOs to protect the elderly people, if offspring neglect them. But if government itself is harsh and unjust by deducting 50 percent of the salary from their meagre pension, one wonders who will come to their rescue.

Jandhyala Ravi Shankar, a leading advocate of High Court told 'The Hans India' that there is no provision in the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897, or the Disaster Management Act, 2005 or regulations farmed under the act, 1897 which empowers the government to curtail the rights of the pensioners. He is strongly in favour of the pensioners in view of sole dependents on pensions and many of the elderly people don't like to depend upon their children and hence any deductions would cause hardship to them. The advocate has emerged as sole champion of the retired employees and taken up the responsibility of arguing on behalf of the helpless and voiceless pensioners against the atrocious GO MS No 26, "purely meant to cut 50 percent of the pension every month till further orders."

Dr NKV Rao, a retired principal felt that after deduction of income tax for three months, the fourth month cut by AP government is uncharitable and unjustified. The government should exempt retired people from the unkind cut of 50 percent and relieve them of this distress.

Naga Raju, a private school teacher opined that his mother, being a family pensioner, cannot afford any cut in her pension in view of the domestic compulsion.

K Arun Kumar, a retired principal remarked that the pensioners get 50 of the regular salary fixed at the time of retirement. A further cut of 50 percent from the pension is grave injustice and GO No 26 should be repealed immediately.

Dr Ch Kama Raju, professor of law lambasted the government for their inept handling of the financial crunch due to Caronavirus and inability to pay the pensions for their employees. He wondered if the government has become bankrupt in such a short time.

GV Ratnam, general secretary of Voxpopuli, an organization for the voiceless wondered how one or two politically-minded representatives of pensioner associations could accept for 50 percent cut in the pensions without consulting the district units and members of association.

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