7th Pay Commission: Pay hike likely to be announced ahead of general elections

New Delhi: The central BJP government is likely to announce a pre-election pay bonanza for 10 million government employees and pensioners.

The announcement of pay hike will be made by FM Arun Jaitley before the general elections 2019.

The likelihood of central government employees getting pay hikes ahead of the general elections, scheduled to be held in April or May 2019, that would soar the pay above the 7th Pay Commission recommendations, was got cabinet nod on June 29, 2016.

The worst pay revision on the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission in the history of the last 70 years, that started from January 1, 2016, hike of 14 percent in the basic pay.

According to the revised pay rates issued by the Union government 2.57 times fitment factor of basic pay of 6th pay commission was given to employees with minimum pay from Rs 7,000 to Rs 18,000.

The average pay hike 14.27 per cent was recommended by the 7th Pay Commission. However, the previous 6th Pay Commission had recommended a 20 per cent hike, which the government doubled while implementing it in 2008.

The central government employees unions were demanding minimum pay Rs. 26,000 instead of Rs 18,000 and 3.68 fitment factor for all employees and they had threatened to go on an indefinite strike over pay hike on July 11, 2016.

They had called off their indefinite strike following the pay hike promise of the Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on June 30, 2016.

Jaitley also reiterated his promise in Rajya Sabha on July 19, 2016.

The unions now said that the government has breached the agreement on hike in pay and fitment factor of the 7th pay commission and has generated serious disappointment among central government employees.

The unions leaders also said, if required the unions may strike work.

According to sources, the delay in pay hike is due to lack of response from the Finance Ministry to the promise of FM Jaitley over the last two years before finally sending its to the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) for nod.

PMO is under pressure to deliver a strong victory for PM Modi’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), as he struggles with cash crunch, dilution of SC, ST Atrocities (Prevention) Act and the rape incidents.

The PMO also knows that the salaries class, which played a major role in bringing the BJP to power in 2014 but now salaries class felt extremely frustrated because poor pay hike and allowances under BJP regime.

In a measure of relief to the central government employees, the government may announce pay hike beyond the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission ahead of the general elections, 2019.

The announcement of pay hike will be made by Jaitley before the general elections 2019, the sources said.