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Thursday, August 06, 2020

Maharashtra Govt scraps pension of those jailed during Emergency

In January 2018, the Devendra Fadnavis government, of which Shiv Sena was a part, had rolled out a pension scheme for all those jailed for opposing the Emergency between 1975 and 1977.

By: Express News Service | Mumbai | Published: August 1, 2020 3:07:43 am
uddhav thackeray, 1975 emergency, emergency jailed leaders pension, jailed leaders during emergency pension scrapped, indian express news Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray. (File)

In another significant reversal of a decision taken by the previous BJP-led regime, the Uddhav Thackeray government on Friday discontinued pensions being given to those who had been jailed during the Emergency.

According to the Uddhav-led general administration department, which issued a resolution in this regard, the move to stop pension was triggered by the sharp drop in revenues and the worsening financial position of the state exchequer in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.

In January 2018, the Devendra Fadnavis government, of which Shiv Sena was a part, had rolled out a pension scheme for all those jailed for opposing the Emergency between 1975 and 1977.

Accordingly, Rs 10,000 was being paid to all those who had spent more than a month in jail and Rs 5,000 to those who had spent lesser time behind bars. In cases where the beneficiary in question had passed away, their spouses were eligible for 50 per cent of the due pension amount.

In 2018-19 and 2019-20, the Fadnavis government had earmarked Rs 42 crore a year towards disbursal of the pension. Over 2,500 beneficiaries had been identified, said officials.

While the department cited drop in revenues and tax collections as the reason for scrapping of the pensions, sources said that political considerations had also contributed to the decision.

The Congress had opposed the move of honouring those jailed during Emergency with a citation, which was being done during the previous regime.

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