7th Pay Commission: Govt under strike pressure to hike minimum pay beyond Rs 18,000
New Delhi: The government is coming under intense pressure to hike the minimum pay of central government employees beyond Rs 18,000, a day after the Modi government announced 7th Pay Commission award for its employees.
The 3.3 million central government employees have rejected Modi government’s overall 23.5 percent pay hike bonanza based on 7th Pay Commission recommendations and would go on indefinite strike from 6 am, 11 July.
The central government employees unions to use the strike as a bargaining chip to hike their pay and allowance under 7th Pay Commission award.
Accordingly, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, Home Minister Rajnath Singh and Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu met unions leaders of central government employees late on Thursday for almost two hours and assured them that their demand would be looked into.
The central government employees unions have been demanding Rs 26,000 as minimum pay instead of Rs 18,000 approved by the government based on the 7th Pay Commission’s recommendations.
“Three ministers called us and we met at Rajnath Singh’s house for two hours till 11pm last night. We have been assured that the minimum pay issue is going to be referred to one of two committees that the government is setting up to rectify any anomalies in the pay commission recommendation implementation,” said Shiv Gopal Mishra, General Secretary of the National Joint Council of Action.
Mishra added, “Finance minister Arun Jaitley said the government will try to rectify some of our demands including minimum pay in the meeting.”
The Union cabinet on Wednesday has increased minimum pay from Rs 7000 to Rs 18,000, while the starting salary of a newly-recruited employee at the lowest level will now be Rs 18,000, and a Class I officer will get Rs 56,100.
The Cabinet ditto with the 7h Pay Commission recommendations, the commission recommended 23.55 per cent hike in salaries, allowances and pensions and a 14.27 per cent increase in basic pay for Central government employees, the lowest in 70 years.
The central government employees Unions leaders on Wednesday said the approved hike was lowest in many decades and were not in sync with inflation. They also said it is “totally disappointing and beats logic”.
The Congress and the Left parties Thursday came out in support of the indefinite strike from July 11 call given by central government employees’ unions to protest the “inadequate” hike in their salaries.
While the Congress said the hike was the worst in the last 70 years, the CPM said it was “disappointing.”