Hyderabad: In a first of its kind initiative in the country for the welfare of Armed Forces personnel – martyred, retired and serving – Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao on Tuesday announced a slew of measures including the setting up of an “Army Welfare Fund,” massive increase in cash awards to army personnel from the State winning Gallantry Medals and a host of other concessions.
Making a statement in the State Legislative Assembly, the Chief Minister said he and his cabinet colleagues would contribute Rs 25,000 each per year while lawmakers from the State would contribute Rs 10,000 each per year towards setting up of the Rs 80 crore “Army Welfare Fund” that would be used for the welfare of army personnel and their families.
“Responding immediately to the government appeal, all ministers, MPs, MLAs, MLCs have decided to contribute to the Fund,” he said, adding that government employees too had decided to contribute one day’s wages towards the Fund.
Besides the Fund, the Chief Minister also announced massive increase in cash rewards given to Army personnel from the State who win Gallantry Medals. Army personnel from the State winning Param Vir Chakra and Ashok Chakra will get Rs 2.25 crore (Punjab pays the highest at Rs 2 crore), Mahavir Chakra and Kirti Chakra Rs 1.25 crore (Punjab Rs 1 crore).
Observing that Army personnel were discharging their duties of protecting the nation’s geographical integrity and sovereignty even under extreme conditions, Rao said: “It is the bounden duty of society to ensure the welfare of Army personnel and their families, and should consider it as an act of gratitude towards the brave soldiers.”