The History behind the introduction of pension in India

The History behind the introduction of pension in India
(I did not know it, did you ?)

The History behind the introduction of pension in India


Today, government employees retiring from service are blessed with a sizeable amount as pension. Even during this pandemic situation, pension holders could survive without many difficulties. But, most people aren’t even aware of the person who had introduced this system in India.

In Malayalam, pension is called vishramavethanam or adithoon.

During the year 1860 to 1880, Travancore (now part of Kerala) was ruled by Ayilyam Tirunal Ramavarma Maharaja. One of his sevaks, Kochappan Pillai retired from service. He was totally dependent on the salary he was getting from the government and once he retired, he found it difficult to survive. Poverty crept in and his children began falling sick. It was very difficult for him to cope with the situation. One by one four of his children died and the news spread fast everywhere and fell into the ears of the Maharaja. Maharaja immediately called Kochappan Pillai and ordered the officials to pay some amount from the treasury immediately. He also declared that none of the people retiring from government service should face this kind of situation. He called all his advisors/senior officials for a meeting and after the meeting, asked the Diwan, T. Madhava Rao, to keep the documents for the final declaration ready. On 15th August 1864, the Maharaja himself called a huge gathering and brought this adithoon ordinance into the act. The pension act continues till date with some changes here and there.

Sreekumar Menon

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