MINISTER OF DEFENCE (SHRI GEORGE FERNANDES)
(a) to (e): A statement is attached.
STATEMENT REFERRED TO IN REPLY TO PARTS (a) TO (e) OF LOK SABHA UNSTARRED QUESTION NO. 6548 FOR 9.5.2002
News item titled `Healing Touch` published in the Hindustan Times on 18.2.2002 is about a scheme under which wounded and retired soldiers residing in villages will be made dealers/agents/marketing coordinator for the products of various private companies. Government is not directly involved with this scheme.
Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, which is the nodal Ministry for the welfare of persons with disabilities, is having a number of welfare programmes and schemes for all persons with disabilities including ex-Servicemen. Besides, those Defence personnel who are disabled in war or peace time due to causes attributable to military service and are fit for civil jobs, are eligible on priority-I or employment against Group `C` and `D` posts, for which recruitment is made through the Directorate General of Employment and Training.
Ministry of Defence is also having schemes for the welfare and resettlement for disabled ex-Servicemen. The disabled soldiers are provided artificial limbs by the Artificial Limb Centres. They can avail the benefit of loan assistance on liberalised terms under Self-employment (SEMFEX) schemes to set up tiny/small scale industries, small scale service enterprises, undertake agricultural and allied activity, set up Khadi and village industries in rural areas. Besides, Queen Mary Technical Institute, Pune, a private charitable institution, conducts ITI recognised vocational trades training courses for disabled ex-Servicemen to facilitate their rehabilitation. In addition, paraplegic homes at Kirkee and Mohali are being run for rehabilitation of paraplegic and tetraplegic ex-servicemen.
Information about the number of wounded soldiers who have been benefited from the various schemes is not centrally monitored.