The Maharashtra government led by Eknath Shinde on Thursday restored the pension scheme meant for those political activists who were imprisoned during the Emergency imposed in 1975.
The scheme, which was introduced by the Devendra Fadnavis government in 2018, was scrapped by the Uddhav Thackeray-led Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) dispensation in 2020. The Fadnavis government, which was in power between 2014 and 2019, had taken the decision to provide pensions to the activists, who had protested against the Emergency imposed by the then prime minister Indira Gandhi.
The pension amount ranged from Rs 5,000 to Rs 10,000 depending upon the jail term they faced between 1975 and 1977. Anyone who underwent imprisonment for less than a month or up to a month would get Rs 5,000, while those who were jailed for three months and above would get Rs 10,000.
Fadnavis, who is now the deputy chief minister, said the activists who protested against the Emergency belonged to the RSS, Jan Sangh and some political parties.
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”Several people were jailed because they protested for reinstating democracy. My own father was in jail for two years,” he told reporters. The MVA government may have stopped the pension scheme under pressure from Congress, he said.