Government committed to Armymen's welfare: Antony
Thiruvanathapuram: Defence Minister AK Antony on Saturday said government is committed to the welfare of defence personnel and ex-servicemen.
Addressing the "Army Mela' at nearby Pangode military camp, Antony said the pension of ex-servicemen would be revised with a total commitment of Rs 2,300 crore.
"Order in this regard would be issued next month", Antony said, adding, in 2009, after he took over as Defence Minister, the pension for ex-servicemen was revised with a total outlay of Rs 2300 crore. This increase happened after the sixth pay commission recommendations," he said.
Stating that it was the government's responsibility to look after the welfare of defence personnel and ex-servicemen, Antony said peace prevailed in the country due to dedication and vigilance of 'our armed forces' to protect boundaries.
"Centre not only extends assistance to armed forces in imparting training and equipping it with modern weapons, but also equally gave importance of personnel's welfare," he said.
Antony said Indian defence has 13 lakh personnel and out of this 11 lakh were in the Army. Besides this, India has Coast Guard and Territorial Army strength of 23 lakh and 14 lakh NCC cadres who assist defence forces in times of need, he said.
Antony also said India was able to overcome various crises since Independence mainly due to the strength and dedication of defence forces.
The Army has organised an exhibition of ammunition and other armaments as part of the mela titled 'Know your Army'. The army personnel also displayed their adventurous skills during the occasion,which witnessed huge public participation.
Union Minister of State for HRD Shashi Tharoor, top South-Indian actor and Lt Col in Territorial Army Mohanlal were among those present.
GOC in Chief Southern Army Command Lt General AK Singh welcomed the audience.