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Medal burning disrespectful, says Parrikar

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New Delhi: Reiterating that the One Rank One Pension (OROP)scheme was fulfilled, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said, the medal burning  incident was a disrespectful one.

“OROP was an election promise of the BJP and I feel the promise has been fulfilled. The notification was issued after consultations with 300 various ESAs. Para 6.4 of Koshiary Committee says the pay review in five years is an acceptable proposal,” Parrikar told reporters.

He advised the protesting veterans to go to the Judicial Commission if they had any pending issues.

“Burning of medals or showing disrespect to the service medals is neither good for the nation nor to the Defence service. The medals are given in the Armed Forces for gallantry, performance or service to the nation and it is not a service condition,” Parrikar added.

The minister said OROP and medals were two separate issues and must not be mixed up.

Indian Ex-Servicemen Movement general secretary VK Gandhi had said earlier on Thursday that the veterans’ attempt to burn their medals to protest the “diluted” OROP scheme showed that they were emotionally charged.

However, Maj Gen (Retd) Satbir Singh, who is leading the OROP protest against the government, rubbished the rumour of ex-servicemen burning their gallantry medals.

He also called upon the Defence Minister to meet the protesters and have an open discussion.

Meanwhile, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal went to Jantar Mantar today and expressed solidarity with the protesting war veterans.

(With inputs from different sources)

(Picture Courtesy: www.theweek.in)

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Indian-American Lawmakers Slam US President Donald Trump’s Transgender Military Ban

They are accusing him of bigotry

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Trump's transgender military ban is being slammed by India-American lawmakers
Trump's transgender military ban is being slammed by India-American lawmakers. Wikimedia
  • Ami Bera is the longest-serving Indian-American currently in the Congress
  • Removing these men and women from service or refusing recruits because of who they are going against every American value they swear to defend
  • Our transgender service members deserve honour and respect

Washington (US), August 27, 2017: Prominent Indian-American lawmakers have criticised US President Donald Trump after he signed a memo instructing the Defence Department to stop accepting transgender people into the armed forces.

The presidential memorandum signed on Friday officially requested the Pentagon to develop an implementation plan for the ban by February 21, 2018, to be put in place on March 23, 2018.

Slamming the move, Democratic US Representative Ami Bera said, “If you wear an American military uniform, you deserve the respect and support of the Commander-in-Chief… Unfortunately, Donald Trump is more comfortable peddling in discrimination and bigotry, and he’s shown that he is unable to support our troops.”

“Removing these men and women from service or refusing recruits because of who they are going against every American value they swear to defend,” said Bera, who is the longest-serving Indian-American currently in the Congress, in a press release.

ALSO READ: US Senate Confirms Three Indian Americans picked by President Donald Trump to Key Governmental Posts

The directive, signed on Friday, bars transgender people from enlisting, but instructs Secretary of Defence James Mattis and the Homeland Security “to determine how to address transgender individuals currently serving based on military effectiveness and lethality, unitary cohesion, budgetary constraints, applicable law, and all factors that may be relevant”, according to a White House official.

It ordered the Pentagon to stop paying for gender reassignment surgeries, except in cases that were already in progress to “protect the health of an individual”.

California Democrat Ro Khanna tweeted, “Our transgender service members deserve honour and respect. This military ban is anti-trans discrimination and must not be tolerated.”

In a tweet, Illinois Democrat Raja Krishnamoorthi said that he hoped that Trump would reconsider the ban.

“I hope the President immediately reconsiders this ban. There is no place for discrimination in our armed forces.”

In another tweet, Krishnamoorthi said, “We must never abandon those who have sacrificed so much for their nation. #ProtectTransTroops”

Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal, a Democrat from Washington, termed the ban “downright shameful”.

“I stand shoulder to shoulder with the transgender community. This is downright shameful. #TransRightsAreHumanRights,” she tweeted. (IANS)