MEMBERSHIP FEE OF IESM
AND DONATIONS FOR IESM
IESM Governing body had been getting suggestions from veterans and conveners that there was a need to increase the number of members for IESM and the only way to achieve this was by reduction in membership fee for the veterans. In deference to the opinion from the veterans, IESM Governing Body reduced the membership fee for one month from 16 Dec 2009 to 15 Jan 2010 on a trial basis. As against the regular membership fee of Rs 500, Rs 200 and Rs 100 for officers, JCOs and OR, the fee was reduced to Rs 100, Rs 40 and Rs 10 respectively.
Approximately 3,500 members have been enrolled during this one month of the trial period. A minuscule number amongst them have given some donation. While we all certainly feel happy about the large number of IESM members enrolled during this short period but this has not generated the wave of membership which was expected. The collections have been so small on account of membership fee that there will be very little interest on this when put in fixed deposit. It is for the information of the members that as per Govt rules of societies we have to put this amount in a corpus fund and can only use the interest earned on it for meeting the expenditure. On the other hand the donations received are so small that they do not merit any mention. In any case the seemingly large number of new members so enrolled is also because of the concerted membership drive during this period by most Conveners. One wonders if membership drive with this zeal and spirit was undertaken with full membership fee, Would we have not made these members?
The Governing Body of IESM, in its meeting on Sunday, 31 Jan 10, examined the number of new members joined viz a viz the finances of the IESM.
Maj Gen PK Renjen, Treasurer IESM explained the financial problem arising out of this reduced membership fee on trial basis. Registration of one member costs over Rs 20 , which includes the cost of form, postage for forms to conveners, postage of forms back to IESM HQ, cost of printing membership card, postage for dispatching membership cards to members and the travel expenses of the conveners visiting villages for enrolling new members. He appreciated the effort put in by few dedicated conveners and veterans of spending their own money,without any charges to IESM, for enrolling new members. He explained that this system of free service by the conveners/veterans is an exception and can not be expected to be a rule. Besides the above expenses, considerable amount is deducted as service charges by the bank on the cheques that are deposited by the conveners in HDFC bank away from NCR. For example bank has levied a charge of Rs 16000/ in 2008-09 as transfer charges for the amounts deposited by the conveners in HDFC bank branches outside Delhi. We have taken it up with the bank to wave aside these charges but as on today IESM account has been deducted with this amount. If above pattern to enrol members and donations with reduced membership rates is continued, IESM will soon be left cash-less to meet routine expenses. If the collections cannot match the initial expenses of membership itself, how can be there any saving for future expenses?
The Treasurer further explained that as per existing Government rules, IESM has to meet its expenses from the donations received and the interest earned from the corpus in bank. The donations given by the veterans in Financial Year 2008-09 were sufficient for our expenses in that financial year and IESM expenses in the current financial year till December 09. He further explained that an effort was made to approach the corporate houses for the donations for IESM. But the corporate houses have explained that as per their policy the donations can be given for upliftment of villages, downtrodden and extremely poor people and that too on health, environment and education projects. IESM does not fall in any of these categories, hence the possibility of getting large donations from corporate houses is very remote. The process of approaching the corporate houses is still continuing. Hence IESM would have to find its own resources of meeting its expenditure through a large membership fee corpus (to generate handsome interest income) and by depending essentially on donations by the better off ESM - particularly those who are running their own businesses.
Hardly any donations have been received in the current financial year. With just two lakh rupees plus left in the kitty for expenses in the current financial year – the treasurer asked the other members in the meeting as to how would IESM meet the expenses for the forthcoming rally for depositing the medals on 14 March? Expected expenditure for the rally will be roughly Rs2.5 lakh. And the expected expenditure for the court case for OROP is likely to be in the range of Rs 5 lakh, which IESM should file, sooner than later.
Funds are also required for daily administrative work of IESM. IESM has not set up a separate office only because it wants to conserve meagre resources available with it. The work load of IESM is increasing manifold with setting up of three divisions to help the ESM, necessitating immediate renting of office space, suitably equipping and furnishing it and hiring clerical staff. It is inescapable to invest in office space to garner the confidence of the veterans.
Those of the Governing Body members who have been moving in the villages and felt the pulse of the veterans while addressing rallies, have indicated that the ORs feel that Rs 100/ as one time fee for life membership is reasonable and affordable and should not be reduced. We have also received similar feed back from the field that the one time fee of Rs 100 as life member is reasonable and affordable. However some members have also favoured the permanent reduction in membership fee.
Governing body deliberated on this issue at length and unanimously decided the following.
Welcome the new members in the IESM family.
Thank the conveners and veterans who have made extra effort to enrol new members at reduced membership fee. It is expected that the conveners and veterans would continue with same zeal and vigour to enrol more members in future also.
Membership fee has been restored to its original rate that is officers Rs 500/, JCOs Rs 200 and ORs Rs 100 with effect from 15 Jan 10. Membership fee for widows would be Nil. All new members should now be enrolled with this fee structure.
More effort would be put in to convince the corporate houses and business leaders for donations.
An appeal would be made to all veterans to donate generously to the IESM.
To meet the immediate needs of finance, the amount paid by a member be split into two as follows, and record it as such;
Contribution Rs Membership Fee Rs Donation Rs Officer 500 100 400
JCO 200 40 160
OR 100 20 80
APPEAL; ALL VETERANS ARE REQUESTED TO DONATE GENEROUSLY FOR IESM. ALL DONATIONS ENJOY EXEMPTION UNDER RULE 80G OF INCOME TAX RULES. A RECEIPT WILL BE ISSUED TO ALL DONORS
Gp Capt VK Gandhi VSM
Gen Sec IESM