Published On: Mon, Dec 11th, 2017

7th Pay Commission: Employees, govt face off over minimum pay hike

New Delhi: The wait for minimum pay beyond the 7th Pay Commission recommendations just got longer for central government employees.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley didn’t keep his promise to hike in minimum pay and fitment factor.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley didn’t keep his promise to hike in minimum pay and fitment factor.

The Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT)’s insistence that the employees follow its  letter dated October 30 and the latter pointing to Finance Minister Arun Jaitley’s promise in Rajya Sabha on July 19, 2016 to hike minimun pay.

Jaitley had said in Rajya Sabha on July 19, 2016, “The minimum pay of central government employees Rs 18,000 was made on recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission. But government will consider hiking it after discussions with all stakeholders, once the proposal in this regard will be submitted to government by the proposed High Level Committee.”

Now, the DoPT letter, says minimum pay and fitment factor doesn’t come under the purview of the NAC.

Government officials said that the government has committed to hike minimum pay for the central government employees. However, the High Level Committee has not been formed till date, so the process is taking longer.

The government will sort out this issue shortly,” they told The Sen Times.

An office-bearer of a central government employees unions said that the current minimum pay Rs 18,000 is not enough to live on. So low paid employees are financially incapable of handling families financial burden.

“In fact, we were hoping that the hike in minimum pay will infuse new lives into the central government employees. However, the government formed National Anomaly Committee (NAC) in September, 2016 to look into pay anomalies arising out of the implementation of the 7th Pay Commission’s recommendations and the government had said the NAC would discuss any pay hike agenda,” he said.

“On the other hand, the letter of Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) say that minimum pay hike is not covered under the NAC,” he added.

On June 29, 2016, the government has given nod the 7th Pay Commission proposal of minimum pay from Rs 7,000 to Rs 18,000 per month while the maximum pay from Rs 80,000 to Rs 2.5 lakh with a fitment factor of 2.57 times uniformly of basic pay of 6th pay commission. However, the Unions have been demanding minimum pay Rs 26,000 instead of Rs 18,000 with 3.68 fitment factor.

“There were inordinate delays in hike in minimum pay. we will proceed on an indefinite strike over it,” he said. “This is very surprising, the Finance Minister didn’t keep his promise to hike in minimum pay and fitment factor.”

“The  DoPT letter makes difficult for the government to convince the employees unions that the government is really serious about the minimum pay hike and fitment factor,” the government officials said.

“The Finance Ministry has flagged this issue to the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT). This is not a healthy state of affairs,” the officials added.

“The Finance Ministry remains committed to finding the solution to hike in minimum pay beyond the 7th Pay Commission recommendations for the central government employees, accordingly a High Level Committee is likely to be formed to formulate a new pay structure beyond the 7th Pay Commission’s recommendations,” the officials confirmed.

The officials also said, “the government won’t appoint pay commissions every ten year and pay and allowances will be hiked when Dearness Allowance (DA) crosses 50 percent,”

Jaitley including two senior Cabinet Ministers had promised employees’ unions to hike minimun pay and fitment factor on June 30, 2016, a day after the Cabinet cleared the 7th Pay Commission recommendations, in Home Minister Rajnath Singh’s house and they assured the unions leaders that a High Level Committee would look into the increasing minimum Pay and fitment formula and their assurance had prevented several central government employees’ unions to go indefinite strike over pay hike from July 11, 2016.

TST

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