A GLIMPSES ON THE BACK GROUND OF THE ASSOCIATION
Initially on 23.11.2004 a gathering of Retired Telegraph Employees was arranged by Mr. D.D. Mistry to meet retired friends, which found good response. And such gathering continued for year 2005 and two times in the year 2006 having such meet for five times. During this period members exchanged their views and expressed their various difficulties and ultimately it was decided to give a final shape in the name of Association. About 111 members were enrolled spontaneously and the sphere is now expanded to all BSNL Retired Employees and DOT Retirees as well.
In Gujarat Circle, there are two other sisters organization propagating them as Retired Employees Counselor and serving them. However, since they are all the Central Government Pensioners Organization and interest of Telecom Employees could not be taken care of and necessity of the Organization exclusively of BSNL & Telecom Pensioners was felt. Further, they had started to aim their future demands comparing the conditions of BSNL Employees, which means they was no possibility for BSNL Pensioners benefits.
Further from October 2000 onwards majority of DOT employees had given option for BSNL and the offices of DOT at base level to All India Level, including District and Circle, came to a grinding halt. There is no machinery for them at base level for representation of their genuine grievances as only one OFFICE FUNCTIONS at New Delhi known as DOT, which works through BSNL.
The existing two Associations in Gujarat have no in-depth knowledge of BSNL Working pattern and as such they could not take care of just and genuine woes of BSNL Pensioners. Medical Allowance was given quarterly but not at par with working Employees and was delayed for weeks go gather. The Pensioners who are aged and unable to walk or climb staircase were find it difficult to get the same and there was no remedy available to them.
Thus in order to come out from above suffering, to guard their future pension and find solutions to their problem, this Association has taken birth.It will continue to serve as chain between Administration, Existing Unions and Pensioners. It will carry out its social functions as well and give Philip to retired employees. It has started system of sending Birthday Greetings to all its members on their Birthday by sending pictorial nicely worded greeting cards. Even in time grief to Pensioners, it gives sympathy to them and nurses them.
The Association will be registered with Registrar of Co-Op. Societies and with other competent authorities for legalize, effective and authentic functioning.
It proposes to build up a web site of its own so as to provide its members necessary information. It contemplates to commence session for mental uplift of its members by imparting them necessary infrastructure.
In the end a General Body Meeting of the Association was convened on 25.04.2006 in the Mehdi Nawab Jang Hall, Paldi, Ahmedabad Shri D.K. Agrawal, Chief General Manager, Gujarat was the chief guest of the function. Shri Rakesh Joshi, General Manager (Administration), CGMT Office and Mr. Bhatnagar, Pr.,General Manager, Ahmedabad Telecom District were also present. Conferring them Shawl and Booke the following retirees of 75 years were honored.
The following office-bearers were unanimously elected for the year 2006-07 & 2007-08.
1. President : A.N. Patel
2 Working President: J.B. Kumpavat
3. Vice President : A.N. Husini
4. Vice President A.M. Makwana
5. General Secretary: D.D. Mistry
6. Asstt. General Secretary: I.T. Patel
7. Asstt. General Secretary: P.R. Shah
8. Treasurer: : A.D. Dixit
9. Asstt. Treasurer: : K.S. Modi
10. Governing Council Members : K.B. Patel, A.K. Patel, J.S.Dave, V.N. Changawala, G.R. Patel.
The Association was registered under Trade Union Act 1926 vide No: G-6456 at state level and also affiliated with All India Federation of Pensioners’ Associ ation, Chennai. Vide No: A/N 675. It is also affiliated with All India Central Confederation of Pensioner Associations, New Delhi and Bharat Pensioners Samaj, New Delhi.
The Association is publishing BSNL PENSIONEERS NEWS GUJARAT – a quarterly magazine reflecting its multifarious activities and also news/rules useful for BSNL & DoT Pensioners. The magazine is circulated free of charge to all the 1151 members and also to sister organizations through out the country.
First Bi-Annual Conference of the Association
The First Bi-Annual Conference of the BSNL & DOT Pensioners Association, Gujarat Circle, was held on 15.06.2008 at Thakorbhai Desai Hall, Ellis bride, Ahmedabad in a grand gala manner. In the First Session, Shri M.M. Sadhu offered a prayer which moved entire audience with him. The Annual Reports & Accounts were adopted and amendments to constitution were approved unanimously. It was decided to enroll Associate Members from other Circle at par with the Circle with slight difference in membership status. Accordingly, now onwards, only life member will be enrolled with one time fee of Rs.500/- inclusive of admission fee. Administrative charge of Rs.50/- per calendar will be collected from the members to meet with the expenditure of quarterly get-to-gather, magazine and extra activities. The charges will be applicable for members of Gujarat State. S/Shri A.N. Patel, J.B. Kumpavat, D.D. Mistry and V.N. Changawala were elected as President, Working President, General Secretary & Treasurer respectively for ensuing terms. The entire list is published elsewhere in this issue.
The conference also passed resolutions on inordinate delay in payment of IDA, payment of quarterly Medical allowance, merger of IDA for Pensioners, allotment of accommodation of Association Office.
The Open Session commenced with a prayer by Mrs. Kalpna B. Shah. Two minutes silence was observed to pay respect to late Shri M.B. Vichare, General Secretary, NFTE BSNL who expired at Kashmir on 12.06.08 and other members and relatives of members who expired during this period.
The conference was inaugurated by Mr. Satya Pal, CGM Gujarat Circle. Mr. S.C. Mishra, ex-Sr.D.D.G. Corporate Office & now CGM Bihar, Mr. P.K. Gupta, PGM Ahmedabad, Mr. Kamal Kapoor, Jt. CCA, Mr.. Vallinayagam K, Leader Staff Side, National Council, JCM, BSNL & GS FNTO, Mr. Thomas John K, All India President, FNTO also participated in the event. All the guests were greeted with booke, memento and shawls. Circle Union Leaders and Districts of FNTO were also present in large numbers to witness glittering historic event. All the Pensioners were given a beautiful file incorporating Annual Reports, Accounts & Pen.
The Twenty Five Pensioner above 70 years were facilitated in the function with a shawl and flowers.
A BSNL Pensioners Directory 2008, containing 200 pages was also released by Mr. Satya Pal, CGM Gujarat. It contains useful data for 738 members, useful forms for Pensioners, various provision of BSNL MRS Rules, List of Empanelled Hospitals in Gujarat, Various provision for SE DOT Phone Connections and other useful information,. The Directory costing about Rs. 110/- is distributed free of charge to its members as on date.
Shri D.D. Mistry in his introductory speech explained that how the organization came into being and got present shape. This an unique organization of Pensioners which is registered under Indian Trade Union Act, 1926 with Govt. Mr. Mistry further said that the Association is publishing quarterly news magazine which has earned all India reputation for its contents and designing. So far many rules and regulation useful to the Pensioners fraternity have been published. He added that in short span of two years, the Association has progressively made its presence felt in service of the Pensioners and maintained activities like quarterly magazine, get-to-gather etc. he stressed for formation of All India Body for BSNL Pensioners to protect their privileges in future. Mr. Mistry also expressed the difficulties being experienced by the Pensioners in the field of Medical Reimbursement, Payment of IDA and issuance of PPO etc. He stressed on the urgent need of official accommodation to serve the Pensioners more effectively.
Mr. K. Vallinayagam, GS FNTO, said that the Association has blessings of the FNTO since its inception. He said that Mr. D.D. Mistry while maintaining web of FNTO, has also done appreciable work in organizing the Pensioners. He asked all other Unions to extend similar help to the Association at appropriate level for settlement of all the genuine difficulties of Pensioners. He quote one say: “The society which does not care for the senior citizen is not a society at all” The Association takes care of senior citizen. He said he was moved to hear that the officers at some level are creating issues for getting the fact that one day they too will have to take shelter of the association for similar issues. He appreciated Mr. Satya Pal, CGM, Gujarat for settling the issues of Pensioners.
Mr.P.K. Gupta, Pr. General Manager, Ahmedabad Telecom District, said that he is happy to be amongst the Pensioners and to understand their issues. He said that he was meeting Mr. D. D. Mistry & Kumpavat and settling the issues of Pensioners. Further he added that after this conference there will be more attention in settlement of issues as he has seen the work of the Association for Pensioners.
Mr. Kamal Kapoor, Jt. CCA said that now issuance of PPO has been expedited and grievances represented by the association are being looked into. He said that till difficulties are being experienced by the Cell to receive Pension Papers timely from the field, though there is check list. This results in delay in issuance of PPO. Recently the CGM had formed a committee to expedite issuance of PPO and monitoring has been commenced.
Shri S.C. Mishra, Ex. Sr. D.D.G. Corporate Office (now CGM Bihar) thanked the Association for invitation and said that formation of the Association at All India Level will be a good gesture and need of time to sustain the chain of benefits to pensioners. He said that as per amended 37A, clause 21, Pension will be paid by govt. of India and it will continue, so there should not be any apprehension. He dealt on various interesting provision of 6th CPC for PSUs as well and need for meticulous study. He pleaded to supply copy of ruling useful to Pensioners and there should be no difficulty to accept such demands. Mr. S.C. Mishra kept entire audience spell hound and attentive for his informative speech on various provisions in Rule 37A and other BSNL obligation and enlighten on the issue where the Associations should take care of.
Shri Satya Pal, CGM Gujarat in his speech said that he is happy to see the Pensioners in one place. Here are the Pensioners whom we were searching after their retirement. He said that the Association can take up the issue with the support of Service Unions in the R JCM forum and also represent the cases to him. In the coming years there pension related issues will become more complicated, so he asked the Association to take care of to contain.
Mr. Thomas John K, All India President, FNTO said that he has done good work in inspiring Mr. D. D. Mistry to organize the Pensioners and he is happy to see such unique progress in such short span of time. Gujarat has remained always fore front on many issues in Unions and hope that in the field of Pensioners welfare the Association will maintain the same spirit.The Pensioners from all the Districts of Gujarat were present and the conference was concluded with a Dinner for all the participants, guests and invitees.
It was First Conference of BSNL Pensioners in Gujarat Circle, where its administrative head participated and heard their grievances assuring immediate solutions.
S/Shri K. Vallinayagam, GS FNTO, M.K. Rawal & S.R. Padhiar paid a flying visit to renovated FNTO Office and appreciated the new look.