Mandi Bahauddin: The ex-servicemen and widows of Shaheeds held a protest rally here on Wednesday to seek an increase in pension. They led by Major Sher Muhammad (retired) District President Pakistan Ex-servicemen Society (PESS) gathered outside District Armed Service Board (DASB) Camp Office. Holding banners and placards inscribed with their demands, they chanted slogans against the federal government for not increasing their pension. They said over the last two years the price of essential commodities has increased 200 percent and it did not seem to end. On the other side, the rupee has been devalued, because of which value of their pension has proportionally decreased. Resultantly with the present pension, it is not possible to lead the retired life with respect and dignity. They demanded the federal government should review the budget and increase their pension in proportion with the devaluation of the rupee and ever-increasing price during the previous year.
District President All Pakistan Clerks Association Rana Ismail with dozen of clerks joined the rally to express solidarity with retired soldiers and widows of martyrs. Addressing the rally he explained woes of his fraternity. He demanded to remove disparity in salaries and other allowances among government employees serving in different departments. He said persons serving in the Judiciary, National Accountability Bureau and FIA were getting more lucrative pay and allowances that are not being given to them. He also reiterated that inflation and devaluation of the rupee over the last year have reduced their purchasing power with the present pension amount. He appealed to the government to consider the plight of employees of the lower ranks and make a 50 percent increase in their salaries. The protesters during the rally observed all required SOPs to stay safe from the COVID-19 threat.