Wednesday, December 16, 2009

CSD: Need to check default and degradation of services

Extension of free gift schemes to CSD consumers and a need to check default.
Many a times, service- members and veterans end up buying consumer goods from the open market because of the reason that certain offers and free gift schemes are not made available to CSD customers. Some of our people also believe that such schemes are not ‘legally’ not meant to be extended to CSD consumers.

This is however an unfair trade practice by suppliers and dealers. If a gift scheme is offered by a supplier in the open market to all consumers and is not only a local arrangement by a particular dealer, it is bound to be extended to the CSD too. Entitled personnel should make it a point to survey the market first and demand gift schemes from the concerned dealers if the same are being extended to customers other than CSD consumers. In case of default, the same may be immediately reported to the following address :

Customer Service Cell
c/o DGM (MS)
Canteen Stores Department
‘Adelphi’, 119, M K Road
Mumbai – 400 020

Posted by Maj Navdeep Singh

Comment: The consumer/ household goods sold in CSD are obsolete models and many are of poor quality (example cell phone chargers which are a decade old and not compatible with latest cell phone models are being flooded in CSD canteens). Therefore, it is advisable not to buy electrical and household gadgets from CSD as they are likely to be out- dated models. Chroma a Tata Venture a consumer friendly outlet has the best quality and latest household products at very reasonable rates.
Please Check out this webpage: Tata Chroma Retail

CSD Canteens are money spinners
Many formations and units have crores and lakhs of Rupees in Banks spinning even more interest. What is the earthly use of earning so much profits if it cannot be utilized prudently for implementing measures to improve quality of life of serving soldiers and veterans or creating permanent assets to enhance the image of the Armed Forces? The canteen staff are paid peanuts and in few cases the civilian staff are paid by dishing out liquor to compensate low wages! Is this the image the Military should create and spread among civilians?
Truly the Mission Statement of CSD needs to be suitable revised as "Money Spinners" serving no worthwhile cause or purpose (in fact profits generated are grossly misused for other than intended purposes). The CSD ideally should be run on "no profit no loss" basis. This truly will be service oriented.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Reply By Lt Gen Jagdish Chander to Col Shivraj

Dear Col Shivraj,

While I am not the spokesperson for the CSD, I can certainly clarify some myths/perceptions.

1. The perception the a Unit Run Canteen(URC) which sells CSD items is a CSD canteen is incorrect.
2. While there are 35 CSD depots in the country there are over 3400 Unit Run Canteens(URC's) which includes the Naval Canteen at Mumbai which is also a URC. URC's like Naval Canteen Mumbai/ Taurus Delhi / Air Force Canteen Delhi are all regimental canteens which retail CSD stores; while some also also retail non-CSD stores. So when you, buy a non CSD item from Naval Canteen Mumbai, it does not classify it as a CSD item.

3. The perception that most grocery items are provided locally is also not quite correct, specially in the context of the items which you have elucidated, e.g. Surf Excelmatic or Godrej Hair Dye which are part of the toiletry items in CSD parlance. It is true that CSD attempts to collect edible items locally (of their Group 6 if I remember the Groups correctly)that the manufacturers can provide at different stations, however the same is not true of most Group 1 items(toiletry) of CSD .
Regards the NA of some items , my experience has been that when a product gets popular; companies always like to exploit the situation and want a price rise , sometimes 2 or 3 times in a year from the CSD even when the same products price does not increase correspondingly in the market. As aresult a catch 22 situation gets created. Consumers want the product but the increase in price is not justified. In such a situation the finacial interest of the consumer overrides the CSD's decision, and an attempt to bring the companies in line is made.Sometimes the decisions are hard and consumers have to bear with CSD. Take the example of the grand old 'Hercules Rum'. It was the unprecedented price increase demand, which led to that brand disappearing from CSD. I dont know if that brand has been reintroduced now.

4. Regards only one colour of Godrej Hair Dye being on the CSD inventory, it is on account of the consumption pattern. Obviously there must be very little consumption of this product in the CSD. CSD does not keep inventory which does not move.Just to quote an example. Take the case of products which have multiple choices, like shirts,trousers/ paints/ shoes, etc, and imagine having to distribute it to 3400 URC's according to their choice across the length and breadth of the country. I am not for a moment suggesting that in this day and age and with the kind of computerisation available it is not possible to satisfy consumers,if there is a will to do it, however, if it is cost effective and economical , then definitely Yes.
May be if I have some suggestions one can go forward from here.

5. We also need to remember that most consumption of CSD items is by JCO's/ OR's. Therefore the inventory is JCO's/OR's heavy, and rightly so.

With Warm Regards,

Lt Gen Jagdish Chander(Retd)

CDS querry by Col Shivraj

Wed, 9 Sep 2009 10:24:29 +05

Subject: CSD- Non availability of items




Dear General,
I am glad that you having been MD CSD(I) have taken over the CSD cell of IESM.
In 1978, I was at the EDP center in Delhi and helped in the computerisation of the CSD(I).
As far as I understand that most of the grocery items are provided by the local vendors directly to the local depot, from where the units draw their requirements as per the demand placed earlier.
Delhi is one of the Metros and almost all the vendors have their bulk depots here.
1. Why do we get items which are packed 6 months or above.
2. There is a shortage / NA of items which are flooded in the market. For example Surf Excelmatic Front Loading for IFB machines which has not come for the last 6 months or so. The explanation given is that in CSD, there is only one item No for both top and front loading. Same for Godrej Hair Dyes, only one colour ie black is available.
I think you may like to advise the CSD (I) Top Brass to have a visit to the Naval Canteen at Colaba, Mumbai where almost every variety is available all the time.
Col Shivraj
210 Munirka Vihar
New Delhi-110067
Phone: 9810433842
From: jagdish chander
Sent: Wednesday, 9 September, 2009 6:39:53 PM
Subject: RE: CSD- Non availability of items

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Establishment of the CSD Committee by IESM..Lt Gen Jagdish Chander

From: jagdish chander

Sent: Monday, 7 September, 2009 5:30:48 PM

Subject: Re: Establishment of the CSD Committee by IESM

Dear Harwant,
I understand there is a problem in purchase of cars for servicemen (serving and ex-servicemen alike) in the UT of Chandigarh.

On enquiry form CSD sources I am told it that while on the one hand the dealers in Chandigarh cannot charge VAT on interstate transfer, on the other hand the States of Haryana and Punjab stand to lose 4% VAT on every transaction from sale ex Chandigarh dealer.

For your information since introduction of sale of cars up to 1300 cc to JCOs/Ors, the sale of cars has jumped three fold in Punjab alone. As there is no CSD depot at Chandigarh and in interstate transfer the seller/dealer at Chandigarh can only charge CST on cars sold ex Ambala / Jullundur, the non payment of VAT has been observed adversely on CSD by the state authorities.

Obviously, in a case like this the solution lies in resolution with the State Govt Authorities.

A meeting is likely to be held by Western Command with the State Sales tax authorities in the coming week. Let’s wait and see what comes out of it.

Till then it’s a ?.

For your info.
(Lt Gen Jagdish Chander, Former DG ASC, Former MD CSD (I) and Head IESM CSD Cell)


Dear Sir,
Reference the decision conveyed at the IESM meeting at NOIDA on 30 August 2009 regarding setting up of the IESM CSD Division to address the grievances / problems of ex-servicemen related to CSD.

As you are aware that Brig Harwant and I were nominated to head this Division of the IESM. The Central Division is in place and ready to under take responsibilities to deal with complaints of ex-servicemen pertaining to CSD.

While initially we may face some teething problems we hope to be able to respond to every case individually / collectively depending on the type of complaint.

May I request you to please pass this information through your net work to all IESM members to please make a note of my/Brig Harwant's e-mail ID and send in their complaints through you, to us directly as they desire.

We shall then address the complaint and have it resolved.
(Lt Gen Jagdish Chander, Former DG ASC and Former MD CSD(I), settled at New Delhi)

Copy to:-
Brig Harwant Singh. Please confirm if this has your approval .

Dear Veterans.
Your suggestions or complaints pertaining to CSD (I) should kindly be sent directly to Gen Jagdish Chander and Brig Harwant Singh and please do not endorse copies of such emails to me.
I am much too overloaded with emails. – PLEASE. – Chander Kamboj.

Email IDs –
Lt Gen Jagdish Chander –
Brig Harwant Singh (Chandigarh) -