Principal controller loses army veteran’s pension documents

Applicant wanted to enrol his disabled son in scheme; others call PCDA ‘ignorant’

The principal controller of defence accounts (officers) in Allahabad concerned with the pension payment enquiry (PPO) for defence veterans in the city seems to be buried under a pile of blunders. A retired armyman from the city has expressed his frustration over reapplication procedure he has to undergo due to their errors.

In 2006, city-based veteran Col (Retd) Avinash Karnik wrote to their office to record the name of his son, Arjun Karnik, in his pension documents as he sufferes from cerebral palsy with 90 per cent physical disability. In 2006, itself they received a letter confirming that the completion of documentation which was to remain so till the time of his death. However last week Col Karnik received another letter saying that the procedure had to be done again as certain documents were “missing”.

“How can the PCDA lose such personal information? This is their job and they have been in a mess. The family has been asked to provide verification details after every three years. It has taken the insensitive PCDA to inform the officer after a lapse of 11years that his handicapped son’s name is not included in any PPO. This response shows ignorance of the PCDA with respect to disabilities of any kind,” said Ravindra Waman Pathak, who has been handling Karnik’s case.

He called the PCDA “insensitive and ignorant” for not knowing that a person can be physically and mentally handicapped at once, even after the doctor’s certification.

The Karnik family has to undergo all tests and file all the documents again. The letter sent by PCDA stated that all medical certificates have to be submitted afresh in order to keep the son as a beneficiary in the future. It also said, “Such type of case was so dealt with through miscellaneous file, which is not traceable at this stage. It is also mentioned that name of your handicapped son had not been endorsed in any PPO. Furthermore, it is stated that in the affidavit submitted by you Mr. Arjun Avinash Karnik is mentally challenged and physically handicapped. It creates doubt about nature of handicapcy of your son as to whether he is physically handicapped or mentally handicapped.”

Col (Retd) Avinash Karnik wrote again saying that in 2013, when the office was disseminating new PPOs, he wrote to their office ensuring that the names of my family members are mentioned correctly. “But I was shocked when they notified that the documents have to be revisited in the new PPO. The process takes some 2-3 months,” he said.

While speaking to the other veterans in the city it was clear that PCDA problems have been quiet jarring. Most cases are with missing names and some with missing details, all of which have been submitted duly with legitimate documents by the recipients. Col (Retd) Dipak Karnik said, “Just few months back I had to include my wife’s name as well, which they confirmed after months. Without the intervention of fellow veterans it will never be easy to resolve such matters. It still has reduced because we have been aggressive with our approach.”

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